Local News

Kona Ice Helping Christian County Animal Shelter

Kona Ice will be on hand in Taylorville tonight to help the Christian County Animal Shelter. Debbie Denning co-owner of Kona Ice says they will be on hand at 324 N. Clay Street in Taylorville this evening (Friday) from 5 PM until 7:30 PM. 20% of the proceeds will go towards helping the Christian County Animal Shelter. 

 

 

Denning says helping the Animal Shelter is important because a lot of times she feels people forget how much the Animal Shelter does.

 

 

Denning says they will be there till 7:30 but can stay later and she appreciates all the support.

 

 

If you bring your dog, there is a free treat for your pet. 

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TMH CEO Urges Residents To Get The Vaccine

The COVID vaccination world has been a little weird lately. Between the questions surrounding the Johnson and Johnson shot and the rest of the ever changing coronavirus landscape, it’s been tough to follow. Kim Bourne, President and CEO of Taylorville Memorial Hospital knows the changes all too well. Through it all she believes it’s important to receive the vaccine.

 

 

At the end of the day, it’s not a secret that vaccines don’t make you completely immune to anything. Bourne says what they do is lower the risk for severe cases.

 

 

The recent pause on administering the Johnson and Johnson shot might have scared some people off, but Bourne hopes it didn’t. To her the pause means safety is being ensured more than anything.

 

 

The one shot option is back, and Bourne says it should become more available for those who want it. And the risk is not what it seems.

 

 

Bourne appeared as a guest on WTIM, Your Information Station.

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Scholarships Presented To Electrician Apprentices

For the family of Tanner James Mitchell, the time that they got to spend with him was too short, but they are honoring him and keeping his legacy alive through scholarships towards electrician apprenticeships. The first annual Tanner Mitchell Electric Apprentice Scholarship was handed out in the amount of $1500 to 2015 Taylorville High School Graduate Evan Klaves of Warrensburg and one for $750 to Grant Idleman of Mattoon. 

 

Connie Mitchell, Tanner’s mother, says that's the money gets awarded to apprentices who are with the Local 146 IBEW which is where he worked. Connie says the support from the community has been overwhelming. 

 

 

Tanner was a 2016 graduate of Taylorville High School in his second-year apprenticeship for the Midstate Electrical Training Center and employed at Bodine Electric. Tanner was tragically involved in a vehicle accident on January 22nd of 2021 that took his life. 

 

Mitchell’s family hopes to award this scholarship for many years. 

 

(Pictured from left to right: Grant Idleman, Evan Klaves, Shannon Culberson, Shawn Mitchell and Connie Mitchell)

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LLCC To Hold Virtual Commencement Ceremony This Year

The end of the school year looms and with it comes a decision. What are schools going to do about graduation? Director of Lincoln Land Community College in Taylorville, Dee Krueger explains their plan is to hold a virtual commencement, but make it a week long celebration.

 

 

Not to be lost in all these events is the actual ceremony for graduation. That will wrap everything up at the end of the week for all graduating LLCC students from all campuses.

 

 

Graduation signals a job well done in a year that was unlike any other, especially for students. With all the events going on, Krueger mentions one more thing graduates who come out to get the picture taken can get.

 

 

What was a hectic time a year ago has turned into a planned online commencement ceremony, and Krueger thinks that will make things run a lot smoother.

 

 

Krueger appeared as a guest on WTIM, Your Information Station.

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Christian County Sheriff Saves Man From Train

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office saved a man from getting killed by a freight train on Wednesday morning. On April 28th, at 3 AM Christian County, 9-1-1 dispatch received a call that there was a vehicle parked on the railroad tracks near the intersection with ADM Grain Elevator in Taylorville. When the Christian County Sheriff’s Office arrived, they found the driver Jake Billbe passed out in the driver’s seat with the engine running and the doors locked. 

 

Deputy Andrew Voorhees noticed the driver’s window being partly open. With that, Voorhees was able to open the door and wake Billbe. Billbe was able to move his vehicle just before the warning gate arms began to lower. Seconds later the train passed through that intersection.  Billbe was later taken into custody by Deputy Sergeant Robert Goebel for driving under the influence.

 

Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp credits Deputy Voorhees for his quick and brave actions with saving Billbe’s life. Kettelkamp says that Voorhees without hesitation, put his own life in danger to save another life. 

 

Billbe is currently on probation in Christian County for charges stemming from a previous DUI violation. Kettelkamp says that any Deputy would go ahead and risk their lives for the citizens of Christian County and that they have a job to protect and service the citizens of the county. Billbe posted bond and is set to appear in court on June 1st. 

 

 

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Illinois State Police Investigating Death At Sangamon County Jail

The Illinois State Police is investigating a death at the Sangamon County Jail in Springfield. According to the ISP, at 11:40 PM on Tuesday evening, Sangamon County Correctional Staff attempted to provide medical attention to an inmate. The 39-year-old resisted Jail Staff and this led to a struggle.  During the struggle, State Police say the inmate became unresponsive. Jail staff provided immediate emergency medical care to include CPR and an external defibrillator. The subject was transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead. 

 

An autopsy was conducted on Wednesday and a complete autopsy report is pending toxicology results which may take several weeks.  The investigation is still ongoing.

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New Taylorville Treasurer Resigns

The City of Taylorville will be looking for a new City Treasurer. Scott Alberssen, who was elected to be the new city treasurer for the city has stepped down citing health concerns. In a letter to Regional Radio News, Alberssen said, 

 

“I hereby choose not to fill the Taylorville City Treasurer vacancy from the consolidated election on April 6th, 2021.  Health Circumstances have arisen whereby I believe that I will not be able to perform the functions of the city treasurer's office at the level the voters of Taylorville would expect or that I would expect of myself. I would like to thank the voters of Taylorville for their support and understanding.”

 

The Taylorville City Council is set to meet next on May 3rd to swear in the newly elected officials. There is no word yet on how Alberssen’s seat will be filled. 

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Adding Ag To The Curriculum

Agriculture is important for Illinois and for science courses State Senator Doris Turner would like to see more classes be put towards admission requirements for universities. The current curriculum does not count agriculture studies towards the three required years of sciences.  Because of that many students have shied away from those studies, choosing studies for classes that would count towards their degree. The latest legislation would change that. 

 

Currently, the minimum requirements to gain admission to state universities include 15 units of English, Social Studies, Mathematics, Laboratory Sciences, and electives in either foreign language, music, vocational education, or art. Some colleges may accept agriculture science under the auspices of a science course but not everyone does it, so this measure would fix it. 

 

The measure passed out of the Senate and is now in the House of Representatives for further consideration.

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REAL ID Extended Out To 2023

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White commended the US Department of Homeland Security for extending the federal REAL ID deadline to May of 2023.  This gives Americans longer to get the new ID card and helps prevent long waiting lines at the DMV.  The USDHS cited reasons for extending it was COVID-19 and the impact the virus has had on the general public. 

 

All current Illinois driver’s licenses or ID cards will continue to be accepted at airports and secure federal facilities until May 3rd, 2023.  Please visit www.cyberdriveillinois.com instead of visiting a Driver Services facility as many transactions can be conducted online and that includes renewing driver’s licenses and ID cards for those who are eligible. 

 

All driver's licenses and ID card expiration dates have been extended until August 1st, 2021.   This does not apply to commercial driver’s licenses or CDL permits. 

 

Motorists may drive without an up-to-date license plate sticker affixed to their license plate as long as they have their receipt showing they purchased a sticker online before the expiration date. This receipt is valid for no more than 30 days from the expiration of the previous license plate registration sticker’s date. 

 

Over the last two days of the month in March, more than 36,500 customers visited Driver Service facilities to purchase license plate stickers. 73,000 purchased their license plate stickers online at www.cyberdriveillinois.com. 

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Work Zone Safety Awareness Week

Bridges and buildings throughout the state are turning orange this week to honor those who have died in work zones and to raise awareness towards the start of another construction season. April 26th-30th is considered “Work Zone Safety Awareness Week” in Illinois.

 

In 2019, 842 people were killed and 39,100 were injured in work zone crashes nationally.  Illinois averages 6,400 crashes in work zones each year resulting in 1,700 injuries and 34 deaths.  More than 9 out of 10 deaths are from someone other than a worker.  This includes drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. For more information on road work taking place in Illinois visit www.gettingaroundillinois.com. 

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The Census And The Effect On Illinois

Illinois is losing a seat in the US House of Representatives after the census showed that Illinois lost enough population to lose a vote in the electoral college. Jim Bohannon, host of the Jim Bohannon show says that while not something that happens all the time, it’s always foreshadowing when it does.

 

 

While seen at a State level, this can also be seen at a national level as well.

 

 

There are exceptions for some states who swing red or blue and within every state there will be redistricting done as well with certain population shifts.

 

 

Bohannon says this could foreshadow results at the midterm election.

 

 

Jim Bohannon appeared as a guest on the WTIM-Your Information Station Morning Show. 

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Christian County CEO Facilitator Excited For Students To Have Their Own Business

Recently, Christian County CEO students visited the Miller Media Group studios to speak about their participation in this years class and to promote the upcoming May 8th trade show at the Christian County Fairgrounds. Dick Adams is the Facilitator for the program and he says the students have had the opportunity to meet with several different businesses to see how to run their own.

 

 

This is not just a learning opportunity for the students. As will be on display at the Trade Show, the students have created their own functioning business. That is Adams favorite part of the whole process.

 

 

The Christian County CEO Trade Show is from noon until three on May 8th at the Christian County Fairgrounds. It’s free to attend and open to the public. 

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Taylorville School Board Swears In New Officials In Wednesday Meeting

The Taylorville School Board met and swore in new board members at a special board meeting that was held Wednesday evening at 5 PM. Board member Dave Driskell was voted in as School Board President and Trisha Marburger was sworn in as Vice President. The board thanked Dr. George Freese for his many years of dedication towards the board and his time spent. 

 

Committee assignments were handed out and personnel assignments were reviewed. New School Board member Brenda Patrick says she is looking forward to serving the people.

 

 

New board member Jennifer Norris says she doesn’t have any specific goals in mind but she does want to work for everyone in the district.

 

 

New board member Carla Mickey says she is looking forward to working with other board members for the best in the district.

 

 

The next regular school board meeting is set for May 10th.

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Executive Director Chris Weittenhiller Of YMCA Says Goodbye

YMCA Board President Adam Vocks presented an engraved clock to outgoing Executive Director Chris Weittenhiller

to thank him for his 12 years of leadership and to remind him of his time at the Christian Co. YMCA.

Chris has accepted an Executive Director position at the Illinois Valley YMCA in Peru, Illinois.

Adam Vocks is leading a search committee for a new Executive Director for the YMCA in Taylorville

 

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Social Security Administration Offers Compassionate Allowances Program

For those in the thick of their careers, it’s very hard to think about retirement down the road. However, that road could end before you know it. Unforeseen things such has diseases can make it impossible to work, but it doesn’t have to stop the collection of social security. Public Affairs Specialist with the Social Security Administration, Jack Myers, explains they have something called the Compassionate Allowances program.

 

 

Alzheimer’s is just one example of what would fall under the umbrella. With a diagnosis of it, Myers says the decision process for social security happens faster.

 

 

Myers shares there are over 240 conditions that qualify for the Compassionate Allowances program. 

 

 

Getting the official diagnosis is the important part. The Social Security Administration will be able to let you know if your condition applies for the program.

 

 

Myers appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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President Biden Expected To Cover Police Reform In Upcoming Speech

President Joe Biden sits right around 100 days in office. While that number is fairly arbitrary, it does act as an accepted benchmark to evaluate how a presidency will go. Jim Bohannon, host of the Jim Bohannon Show, says that there was plenty evident when President Biden came out swinging at the Inaugural Address. 

 

 

President Biden will be speaking today in what Bohannon says is a makeshift State of the Union Address. Normally that would occur around February. 

 

 

The speech promises to touch on police reform. Bohannon believes that President Biden is not handling that issue well because he doesn’t seem to be respecting the individuality of each case.

 

 

Bohannon adds that the ‘Defund The Police’ movement has lost momentum and also isn’t named correctly.

 

 

Bohannon appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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People's Bank And Trust Adds New Director

People’s Bank and Trust announced a new Director for their Board Of Directors in Josh M. Shallenberger.  Shallenberger, is President/CEO of Shelby Electric Coop headquartered in Shelbyville. The Coop serves 10,000 member-owners over 2,200 miles of energized lines. Shallenberger graduated from Shelbyville High School and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and a Master of Accountancy Science from Northern Illinois University-Dekalb. President of People’s Bank and Trust, John Gardner, says he’s excited to have Shallenberger on board.

 

 

Gardner says that the Board of Director's job is one that will keep Shallenberger very busy.

 

 

Shallenberger also serves on the board of Prairie Power, HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital, Illinois Action Committee for Rural Electrification, Shelby County CEO, East Central Illinois Economic Development, and many others. Josh and his wife Shannon live in Shelbyville with their three daughters. People’s Bank and Trust is a locally owned and managed bank with ten offices and corporate offices in Pana.

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Taylorville School Board Holding Special Meeting Wednesday Night

The Taylorville School District will have a special reorganizational meeting taking place on Wednesday to review the ballot results of the April election and to administer the oath of office to all new Board members. The board will elect a new President and Secretary and establish a time and date for the Board of Ed regular meetings.  Committee Assignments will be handed out and a budget amendment hearing date will be established. The board will hear from visitors and review communications.  The meeting is set to take place, Wednesday, April 28th, at 5 PM at the Taylorville High School Cafeteria on 815 Springfield Road in Taylorville.

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Taylorville Kiwanis Club Hears From Newest Member of Miller Media Group Family at Weekly Meeting

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard from the newest member of the Miller Media Group family, during their weekly meeting Tuesday at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  

 

Trae Wargo joined the radio group in mid-February, after a stint in Pennsylvania.  Wargo is originally from Benld in nearby Macoupin County, and related to Kiwanis members how he got into radio.

 

Wargo told the club he attended college the first time and earned an English degree but still had an itch for radio.

 

 

He enrolled a 2nd time in college, and earned a degree majoring in radio, then working a short time for one of the St. Louis radio groups setting up equipment at live events.

 

Wargo told Kiwanis members he got his first break of being on-air, at a radio station in Pennsylvania and was employed there for a year and a half.  He missed family and friends and began looking for a job in Central Illinois, when the Miller Media Group job opening came up.

 

Wargo is host of the Morning Show on WMKR Genuine Country 94.3, as well as hosting the noon hour of news and information on sister station WTIM.  Wargo is also the group’s production director.

 

Also at the Tuesday meeting, results of Saturday’s successful Kiwanis Pancake and Sausage Breakfast were announced.  Some 350 people purchased meals either in-person or thru the drive-up service offered.  While not all the revenue and expenses are final, it appears the club netted some 2-thousand dollars to benefit projects for children and youth in the Taylorville community.  The club thanks the community for their continued support of this popular fund-raiser.

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CEO Students Excited For Trade Show

Last week, Christian County CEO Students appeared on four of the Miller Media Group radio stations to talk about their participation in this years class and to promote their May 8th Trade Show at the Christian County Fairgrounds. At the trade show, students will be showing off their businesses. Kyle Cearlock, a Senior at Taylorville High School says it’s going to be a great CDC compliant event.

 

 

Cearlock has a business revolving around petcare.

 

 

Chris Cherry, a Senior at Taylorville High School loves cross country and track. He has a building business.

 

 

The Christian County CEO Trade Show is from noon until three on May 8th at the Christian County Fairgrounds. It’s free to attend and open to the public.

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Taylorville Students Of the Month For April Announced

 Peoples Bank and Trust along with WTIM are proud to announce the Taylorville Students of the Month for April. Congratulations to Amie Dye, Abigail Mizeur, Daniel Sloan, and Kyle Cearlock!

L-R:  PEOPLES BANK AND TRUST REPRESENTATIVE NOAH LIKES; FRESHMAN AMIE DYE; SOPHOMORE ABIGAIL MIZEUR; JUNIOR DANIEL SLOAN; SENIOR KYLE CEARLOCK

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Pana Students Of The Month For April Announced

Peoples Bank and Trust and WMKR are proud to present the Pana High School April 2021 Students of the Month for the month of April to Griffin Kimbrel, Ace Armstrong, Jacob Chaurero, and Jessica Gruber.

 

 

From Left to Right, People's Bank and Trust Representative Laura Dudley, Freshman Griffin Kimbrel, Sophomore Ace Armstrong, Junior Jacob Chaurero, Senior Jessica Gruber, People's Bank and Trust Representative Joani Jones.

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Illinois To Lose US Representative Seat

Illinois is set to lose one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Census Bureau said on Monday that the redistribution of the 435 congressional seats based on population shifts in the 2020 Census would force Illinois to lose one seat. There was concern that Illinois might have even lost two seats, but they will only lose one.  State Representative Avery Bourne says it was only a matter of time stating that Illinois is one of the only midwest states to lose a representative.

 

 

Illinois House Republican Redistricting Committee members responded to the first 2020 census numbers saying that now is the time to start reversing this population loss.

 

 

In total, Texas, Colorado, Florida, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon each gained one seat. Along with Illinois, California, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia all lost one seat.

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Taylorville Welcomes New Eagle Scout

The Eagle Scouts have welcomed a new name to their records. Taylorville High School Sophomore Jocelyn Williams earned Eagle Scout and was pinned on Sunday. Williams says she wasn’t the first female Eagle Scout in the council but she is the first in the district and she will be pinned along with 3 others. She says the experience has been very interesting.

 

 

Williams knew that she wanted Eagle Scout but didn’t anticipate all the work that would go into it. 

 

 

She says her Messenger of Peace Award is her proudest accomplishment. Williams made masks and sent them to the cancer facility. 

 

Jocelyn thanked her mom for all her help. We here at Regional Radio News salutes you Jocelyn Williams for all your hard work.  Congratulations!

 

 

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Despite Uncertain Year, Christian County CEO Student Businesses Are Ready

Last week, Christian County CEO Students appeared on 4 of the Miller Media Group radio stations to talk about their participation in this years class and to promote their May 8th Trade Show at the Christian County Fairgrounds. At the trade show, students will be showing off their businesses. Lizzie Shafer is a junior and member of the CEO class. Her business is called Farm Family Meats, and it’s a family business for her.


 

A senior in the class named Gracie Corso has a business revolving around ag education called Ag In Action.

 

 

One of the biggest obstacles this year was COVID-19. They couldn’t be meeting in person and it was just a different experience than CEO students would usually receive. Shafer explains what this year looked like in the program.

 

 

The Christian County CEO Trade Show is from noon until three on May 8th at the Christian County Fairgrounds. It’s free to attend and open to the public.

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Taylorville Park District Meets; Talks Skateboard Parks & Pools

The Taylorville Park District met on Monday evening for their monthly board meeting at the Manners Park Dining Hall at 7 PM. Newly elected board members were inducted. Recreational Director Bailey Hancock informed the board that preliminary conversations have led to the first meeting of a skateboard committee that would bring a skateboard park to Taylorville including Mayor Bruce Barry, the Park District, and many other people.

 

 

Money of course, is a concern as the skateboard park could cost upwards of $300,000. 

 

 

The board will be looking into building a park bench memorial for Jim Curtner, who passed away, at the golf course. Hancock gave an update on the progress on the pool saying that the first inspections were going to be underway this week.

 

 

Hancock says they are still looking for lifeguards for the pool for this summer.

 

 

To view the meeting in its entirety, click here.

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Taylorville Man Dies In Vehicle Crash

A Taylorville man is dead after a Sunday morning vehicle crash. 51-year-old Mark E. Pearse of Taylorville was pronounced dead after emergency crews responded to the crash on 1600 East Road near 1500 North Road in May Township at 4:09 AM on Sunday, April 25th. Pearse was driving a 2012 Chrysler 300. Preliminary investigation shows that Mr. Pearse died from injuries sustained in the crash. The Christian County Sheriff’s Office and Coroner’s Office are handling the investigation.

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CEO Students Excited For Trade Show

Christian County CEO Students appeared on 4 of the Miller Media Group radio stations last week
to talk about their participation in this year’s class and to promote their May 8th Trade Show at the Christian County Fairgrounds. Two Taylorville Seniors a part of the program, Connor and Benjamin, talked about how they got involved and Connor gave his background.  

 

 

Connor and Benjamin will both have table set up at the May 8th Trade Show displaying their businesses and what they have offer. Benjamin has a business called Tech Tutor.

 

 

Connor will have a table set up displaying his business selling farm toys.

 

 

The Christian County CEO Trade Show is from noon until three on May 8th at the Christian County Fairgrounds. It’s free to attend and open to the public.

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HSHS Offering Appointments For COVID Vaccinations

Receiving vaccines is the number one protection against illnesses such as the coronavirus. COVID-19 has proved to have serious and life-threatening effects on the public and because of that, the CDC is urging all Illinoisans to get the vaccine. The COVID vaccine was released at the end of 2020 and to date as of Friday, there have been 10,802,075 distributed.  A total of 8,610,478 vaccines have been administered in Illinois as of last midnight.  The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 118,741 doses.  Thursday, 136,525 doses were reported administered in Illinois.

 

COVID-19 vaccinations are available in St. Clair, Madison, or Sangamon Counties for anyone 18 years and older who works or lives in Illinois.  In Macon County and Christian County, vaccines are available for those who live or work in Macon County and Christian County respectively. You can schedule an appointment to get your vaccine through HSHS. You can find out more about how to register for this vaccine appointment by following these steps.

 

  • Go to www.hshsmyhealthrecord.com
  • Login or Create a MyChart account by clicking “Sign Up Now.”
  • Under Quick Links, click “COVID-19 Vaccine Link”
  • Click “COVID-19 Vaccination” to schedule a FIRST DOSE vaccine appointment.
  • Following the FIRST DOSE, you will need to schedule the SECOND DOSE

 

You will also need to find a time and a vaccine clinic near you that works for the time you have available. Visit here for a list of places to receive your vaccine.

 

If appointments are full, please continue to check back as additional dates and times will be added based on available vaccine supplies and clinic days.  HSHS appreciates the public’s patience during vaccine rollouts.  All vaccine clinics are by appointment only. There will be no walk-ins accepted. 

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Taylorville Park District To Meet Monday Evening

The Taylorville Park District will meet on Monday evening for their monthly board meeting at the Manners Park Dining Hall at 7 PM. Newly elected board members will be inducted. There will be a treasurer’s report and approval of previous minutes.

Under new business, the board will discuss codes of conduct, committee appointments, and a memorial for Jim Curtner.

 

There will also be reports heard from maintenance superintendent Gary Brown along with Recreational Director Bailey Hancock. Lisa Morillo will also give an update as the office administrator and secretary. 

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story on Monday evening after the meeting concludes. 

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Doctors Worry As Drug Addiction On The Rise

Drug overdose deaths have spiked dramatically during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the head of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, 88,000 people in the US died from a drug overdose between September of 2019 and August 2020 about a 27% increase over the year before.  The CDC includes the first six months of the pandemic. Those between 35 and 44 appear to be the most at risk of dying of a drug overdose. Cheryl Crowe, Vice President of Behavioral health for OSF says that people who were seeking treatment often don’t have it available.


 

Crowe says that places like Peoria and Champaign were making great strides to work towards treatment methods for drug addiction before COVID hit.

 

 

Crowe also says that isolation and loneliness have not helped combat drugs, as people use drugs as a way to cope.

 

 

There are plenty of resources available all across Illinois that can help you combat opioid addiction. 

 

 

For those in Christian County struggling with drug addiction, you can contact Safe Passage through their Facebook page or call the Safe Passage Coordinator: Denise Evans at 217-777-0080 or 217-638-3247. You can also call the Taylorville Police Department at 217-824-2211, and ask for Police Chief Dwayne Wheeler.

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Taylorville Community Turns Out for Annual Kiwanis Pancake and Sausage Breakfast

 

Taylorville and Christian County turned out in great numbers on Saturday to support Taylorville Kiwanis Club projects for children and youth, during the club's annual Pancake and Sausage Breakfast at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  It was held following C-D-C guidelines.

 

 

Club president Adam Jeffrey told Regional Radio News the event had a steady flow of people.

 

 

 

Kiwanis Fund-Raising Committee chair Will Perkins, who chaired the event, told Regional Radio News their drive-thru service was a big hit.

 

 

 

The event was moved from its usual January date, for safety reasons in light of the coronavirus outbreak.

 

 

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Charges Filed In Shelbyville Woman's Death

A man accused of killing a Shelbyville woman has been officially charged by Shelby County prosecutors. 73 year old Sherry Hubbart was reported missing over the weekend before being found dead and Shelby County Prosecutors are accusing Hubbart’s grandson and another man with her death. 

 

25-year-old Clayton Anderson, the grandson of Hubbertt, and 19-year-old Thomas M. Miller of Decatur are being charged in the murder. Anderson is being charged with six counts of first-degree murder, concealment of a homicidal death, and possession of a converted motor vehicle.  Miller is being charged with one count of concealment of a homicidal death and one charge of possession of a converted motor vehicle.

 

The charges against Anderson carry a sentencing range of 20 years to life in prison. Hubbartt’s age also has a factor in the extra murder charges.  The extra charges carry a possible sentencing range of 20-100 years behind bars. Anderson is held on a no-bond warrant while Miller is being held on a $500,000 arrest warrant.

 

The two gentlemen are in custody in Nevada after the Nevada Highway Patrol arrested them on separate charges. The state of Illinois and Nevada are still working on extradition and no court dates have been set. 

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Taylorville High School Performing Well In Local Competitions

Learning might’ve looked weird this past year, but the education still took place. Tayloville High School not only navigated through the fluid situation the best they could, they still remain competitive in competitions around the area. Principal Matt Hutchison shares that some journalism students have qualified for a state competition.

 

 

Hutchison explains there are several different aspects of journalism where Taylorville was successful, including broadcast with Tommy TV.

 

 

The Taylorville FFA chapter performed well, too. Hutchison gives credit to the advisors for the consistency of the program.

 

 

Thanks to the help of Tommy TV, Taylorville was able to broadcast a prerecorded senior awards night last year. It went so well, Hutchison says they are planning to do it again this year.

 

 

Hutchison appeared as guests on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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CTI To Help Those During Pandemic With Staying Connected

CTI will be taking part in a program that will help low-income houses. The FCC’s Emergency Broadband Benefit program provides support for broadband services to help low-income households stay connected during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

The Emergency Broadband Connectivity Fund of $3.2 billion dollars was set up on December 27th, 2020 in an effort to help Americans afford internet service during the pandemic. It will conclude when either the funds run out or at the end of the public health emergency.  This will help those who are stuck at home due to unemployment or other financial hardships. It also provides $50 per month towards an individual's bill so if someone qualifies they can get quite the benefit. You don’t have to be a new member, existing members qualify as well.

 

To find out more about the EBB program, CTI will be hosting a free consumer-focused webinar hosted by the FCC on Tuesday, April 27th at 2 PM. The webinar will provide consumers with an overview of the EBB, how you can be eligible, and what you need to do to apply. Registration for the webinar is not necessary.  The event will be streamed live at www.fcc.gov/live. 

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PCASA Aims To Educate About A Very Difficult Topic

As the old cliché goes, information is power. That remains true regardless of the topic. Preventionist and community advocate with the Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault, Deb Bonner, knows that spreading the word about sexual violence is the best way to see the problem lessen. One scope of this problem, says Bonner, is consent.

 

 

The confusion around consent, a lot of times, isn’t that no means no. According to Bonner, it’s that consent can be taken away at any time.

 

 

Education is slowly moving in a good direction. Because of something called Erin’s Law this topic does have to be covered in schools, but Bonner believes it’s still too uncomfortable of a topic to hit home.


 

By avoiding the topic because of its uncomfortable nature, Bonner believes it does a great disservice.

 

 

Bonner appeared as guests on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Springfield Sliders To Host Field Of Dreams Event

The Springfield Sliders will open their season on May 27th for 30 home games and 30 away games this year.  and they are excited to finally have baseball back after missing an entire season due to COVID-19. Todd Miller General Manager of the Sliders and Brian Harrison Assistant General Manager spoke out about the new schedule and Miller says that they will be able to help you in ordering tickets. 

 

 

Miller says there is an important event coming up on May 22nd and 23rd called the Field Of Dreams game.

 

 

Brian Harrison talks about being an assistant GM and says that it’s not work, when you love what you do.

 

 

Miller and Harrison both appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
 

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Taylorville Kiwanis Club To Host Drive Thru Donations In May

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club will be hosting drive-thru donations in May for nonperishable food items and cash donations every Saturday in May from 8:30 until 1 PM. They are then taken over to the food pantry right afterward in Taylorville. Kiwanis member, Will Perkins spoke about the work that goes into the food drive. Will Perkins says that the last time they held this event in November, it was very successful.

 

 

The Kiwanis Club also accepts cash donations which go towards purchasing more products.

 

 

Perkins says that the Kiwanis Club in Taylorville also helps with scholarships for youth in the community.

 

 

Perkins appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Christian County CEO Students Appear on Miller Media Group Morning Shows

8 students from the Christian County C-E-O, or "Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities" program, appeared on 4 of the Miller Media Group radio stations Thursday morning, to talk about their participation in this year's class and to promote their May 8th Trade Show at the Christian County Fairgrounds.

 

Kadin Angel is a senior at Pana High School, and told listeners on Cruisin' 98-point-3 WSVZ the business he'll debut at the Trade Show came out of his grandparents' need to have groceries and medicine delivered to their home.

 

 

Noah Bailey is a senior at Faith Bible Christian Academy in Rosamond, and told W-S-V-Z listeners he's created a business debuting at the Trade Show, that was a result of people being inside this past year.

 

 

The Christian County C-E-O Trade Show is from noon til 3 May 8th at the Christian County Fairgrounds. It's free and the public is welcome to attend.

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Springfield Sliders Back In Action In May

The Springfield Sliders will open their season in May and they are excited to finally have baseball back after missing an entire season due to COVID-19. The Springfield Sliders are a collegiate wood bat team and a Division 1 All-Star team that sees the best college players get together to improve their draft stock and hopeful to get noticed. 

 

Todd Miller General Manager of the Sliders and Brian Harrison Assistant General Manager spoke out some of the new things that will be at the ballpark this year. Miller says that there are two big things coming in to help with family safety including being able to get food at your seat.

 

 

One other thing that is important is host families that help give these college players a place to stay during their summer. Harrison says it is a lifetime of friendship.

 

 

If you want to host a player you can reach out, Miller says that they are still looking for a few families.

 

 

There will be some great promotions coming to the Sliders this summer.

 

 

For more on the Springfield Sliders and to get tickets visit www.springfieldsliders.com.  Miller and Harrison appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
 

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Kiwanis Club Hosting Pancake Sausage Breakfast On Saturday

The Kiwanis Club in Taylorville will be hosting a pancake and sausage breakfast taking place on Saturday morning at the Moose Lodge. Taylorville Kiwanis Members Will Perkins and Adam Jeffrey say that there will be extra features this year due to CDC guidelines for staying safe from the pandemic. Perkins says there will be inside dining but also delivery and drive-thru.

 

 

Perkins says that he enjoys being able to help those who need help and there is a good group of individuals that get together putting in volunteer hours to help children in the community.

 

 

Taylorville Kiwanis has their meetings on Tuesdays at noon at the Moose Lodge.  Jeffrey says that one project he likes is Coats for Kids. Perkins says that another big thing the Taylorville Kiwanis does is help out with scholarships.

 

 

If you want to get involved with the Taylorville Kiwanis there are plenty of ways for you to go ahead and do that.

 

 

The pancake and sausage breakfast will take place from 6:30 AM until 11 AM at the Moose Lodge located at 720 McAdam Drive in Taylorville. Perkins and Jeffrey appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM morning show.

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Taylorville Kiwanis Club Hears About Local Business, Honors Long-Time Donors at Weekly Meeting

 

Taylorville Kiwanis Club member and program chair Mellisa McMillan (left) with Tuesday's guest speaker Lindsey Bliler (right), owner of Farm House Signs and Co on the west side of the Taylorville square.

 

 

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about a local business during their weekly meeting Tuesday at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  

 

Lindsey Bliler opened “Farm House Signs and Company” on the Taylorville square 8 years ago.  Bliler told Kiwanis members her business has grown from one to 2 separate buildings on the square, and recently moved her warehouse and showroom to adjacent buildings on the west side of the square.

 

Bliler told the Kiwanis Club about how she opened the business.

 

 

In addition to her showroom being open Fridays and Saturdays, she sells her hand-made signs on her web site as well as doing Facebook Live on Friday mornings and Sunday nights.  

 

Bliler told the Kiwanis Club that after a recent Facebook Live session, customers from Kansas City came to her shop in person.  She added she’s shipped her hand-made signs to all 50 states in her 8 years in business.

 

 

Also at Tuesday’s Taylorville Kiwanis Club meeting, Marty and Donna Davis (center and right), owners of the area McDonald’s restaurants, were presented a plaque for their many years of supporting Kiwanis fund-raising events.  McDonald’s has provided product for the club’s annual Pancake and Sausage Breakfast as well as being purchasers of pies during the Kiwanis Pie Auction on WMKR Genuine Country 94.3 radio.  Kiwanis president Adam Jeffrey (left) presented the plaque to the Davis'.

 

The club reminds the public of this Saturday’s Pancake and Sausage Breakfast at the Taylorville Moose Lodge from 6:30 til eleven in the morning.  Tickets are 7-dollars for adults and 4-dollars for children 12 and under.  Proceeds benefit local Kiwanis projects for children and youth.

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time.  Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.

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Mindy Mills Recognized As Taylorville Police Department Employee Of The Quarter

The Taylorville Police Department has recognized their Employee of the Quarter for the period of January 1st through April 1st, 2021. The Taylorville Police Department recognizes Mindy Mills as the Employee of the Quarter. Taylorville Police Chief Dwayne Wheeler praised Mills’ demonstrated, sustained, superior performance of her duties. 

 

Chief Wheeler says that Mills has displayed a great level of professionalism, proficiency, and attention to detail and that she worked hard to keep the police department in compliance at all times. He also says that she shows calmness in the midst of extreme pressure and she reflected great credit upon herself, the Taylorville Police Department, and the City of Taylorville. 

 

We here at Regional Radio News salute you, Mindy Mills!

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New House Bill Would Bring Virtual Visits To Senior Living Homes

A new house bill will help senior citizens that have been isolated from their families during COVID. Illinois lawmakers and advocacy group leaders urged the passage of a bill that requires virtual visitation options at long-term care facilities. Senate Bill 2137 is sponsored by Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins and Senator Donald P. DeWitte, along with Representative Anna Moeller and many others including AARP and the Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter.

 

Lori Hendren, AARP Illinois Associate State Director says that this has hurt the most vulnerable population the most and we need to do more for our Senior Citizens.

 

 

SB 2137 would allow nursing home residents to connect virtually with family members loved ones and allow religious activities when in-person visits are prohibited or restricted. Senator Jacqueline Collins says that nursing home residents have suffered much and have lived in fear for too long.

 

 

Senator Dewitte says that this is a big step in the right direction.

 

 

Kelly Richards, State Long Term Care Ombudsman for Illinois says that it’s urgent that this gets pushed through due to the isolation and loneliness on a resident’s quality of life.

 

 

The bill would allow for equipment to be funded through state and federal resources, facilities would be permitted to train volunteers and staff and penalties for nursing homes would not go into effect until 2023.

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Roadwork To Begin On US 51 In Shelby County

The Illinois Department of Transportation is set to start construction on US 51 in Shelby County. The work will take place from ½ mile north of the Shelby County line all the way to the Christian County line. Road work will begin on Thursday, April 22nd. 

 

This work will reduce US 51 to one lane in each direction at times, with plenty of message signs, spotters, and barricades. Motorists can expect delays, allow extra time for trips, and slow down.  Please pay attention to changed conditions and signs in the work zones and obey posted speed limits, don’t use mobile devices, and be alert for workers and equipment.

 

The project has been part of a bigger road construction project in Illinois put together in part by Governor JB Pritzker’s Rebuild Illinois program that includes resurfacing, guardrail upgrades, and pavement markings.  Over the next six years, it’s expected that IDOT will improve more than 3,300 miles of highway and 8.4 million square feet of bridge deck, investing over $33.2 billion into transportation in Illinois. For IDOT District 7 updates or to view area construction details visit www.gettingaroundillinois.com.

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Food Giveaway Taking Place At Christian County Fairgrounds On Wednesday

There will be a special food distribution for residents of Christian County on Wednesday, April 21st at 3 PM at the Christian County Fairgrounds. This address is 1716 West Spresser Street in Taylorville for a drive-thru food giveaway while supplies last. It is open to all residents of the county, no registration required, and no financial eligibility requirements. 

 

Please wear a mask and clear a space in your trunk or back seat to ensure everyone’s safety and to follow CDC and State guidelines. This food distribution is sponsored by Central Illinois Foodbank. Since there will be a special food giveaway, the Taylorville Food Pantry will be closed the evening of Thursday, April 22nd, and reopen on Saturday, April 24th for regular hours from 8:30 AM until 9:30 AM. 

 

The Central Illinois Foodbank was established in 1982 and distributes 10.3 million pounds of food annually to over 160 food pantries, soup kitchens, residential programs, and after-school programs in a 21 county region. Its mission is to provide food, develop awareness, and create solutions for food insecurity. 

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Christian County Board Meets; Approves Expansion Of Enterprise Zone

The County Board met on Tuesday evening. One of the first topics of discussion was EMA Business. The board is still looking for a new EMA Director for Christian County. The board also discussed a resolution for local zoning and land use affairs. The board took a stand against the Government coming in and saying whether or not the county has to have wind/solar or not and take the vote out of the County Board’s hands. Matt Wells along with Ray Koonce said it isn’t fair.

 

 

The motion passed. The board also discussed the enterprise zone expansion. Venise McWard asked about tax breaks and who was eligible for them. A motion was put forward to expand the enterprise zone. Wells said that the Solar company coming in wouldn’t have to pay sales tax. The consensus was that they would be buying most of their materials from Christian County so it would be putting that money right back in. 

 

 

The Solar Farm would be 2.5 square miles. Wells said he wouldn’t do anything without approval from the County Board.

 

 

The motion would pass with only Venise McWard voting no on it. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this topic in the future. The board is meeting with Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp to come up with new ways to pay for a new facility. Dale Livingston says that Sheriff Kettelkamp doesn’t feel that the bail change will reduce the general population. 

 

 

See below for the complete meeting.

 

 

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Pana School Briefly Locked Down For Gun Threat

A Pana School was shut down today due to a threat of a gun, but no weapon was found. According to a press release issued by the Superintendent of Pana School District, Jason Bauer, school officials at Lincoln Elementary were provided with information that a student was in possession of a gun in their backpack.  The school was immediately placed on a brief lockdown and local enforcement officials were notified.

 

After a thorough investigation, no weapon was found and it doesn’t appear that there are any imminent threats of violence towards the school building, students, or school personnel. Bauer says that the school takes these threats very seriously and when staff members or administration is made aware of weapons on school property the school acts immediately.

Bauer thanked the Pana Police Department and encourages parents to have conversations with their children about the importance of school safety and if you see something, say something.

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Montgomery County Sheriff's Office Looking For Missing Irving Man

Montgomery County Police have asked the Illinois State Police for help locating a missing Irving man. 65-year-old Kurt Schmedeke is 5’10” and weighs 245 pounds with hazel eyes.  Schmedeke has brown/gray hair and is wearing brown framed eyeglasses and a camouflage jacket. He was last seen at Reineke Avenue in Irving, Illinois on Sunday, April 18th at 4 PM. Schmedeke was last seen driving a gray 2005 Nissan frontier truck with a license plate of 6395 NR. He has a condition that places him in danger.

 

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Kurt Schmedeke is encouraged to contact the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office at 217-532-9511 or call 9-1-1.  

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Taylorville Community Credit Union Elects Board Of Directors

The Taylorville Community Credit Union recently elected its new slate of Board of Directors. The 2021 Board of Directors include Vance Fraley, Chairman; Kim Sparks, Vice Chairman; Tom Bellegante, Secretary; Will Perkins, Treasurer; and Directors Jim Dowdy, Jim Harrison, Doug Ruddock, Paul Schmitz, and Duane Stock.

 

President Will Perkins says that the board of Directors is all volunteers and put in a lot of their own time to make the Credit Union better.

 

 

Perkins says they have navigated COVID successfully and still have policies in place to make everyone feel safer but you can do a lot of your banking online if need be. 

 

 

If online banking isn’t your thing, Perkins says that you can still come in and know that you will be safe coming inside.

 

 

TCCU serves more than 6,000 members and has grown to $75.8 million in assets. Membership is open to anyone who lives or works within the tri-county area of Christian, Shelby, and Montgomery Counties.  For more information, visit www.taylorvillecommunitycreditunion.com. 

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Taylorville City Council Meets; Discusses Business

The Taylorville City Council met on Monday evening for their bimonthly meeting to discuss business, approve, deny, and table motions along with reviewing bills. One of the first motions talked about for the lake/airport committee was a recommendation to purchase playground equipment at a cost not to exceed $40,000 with money coming from the Fifth Ward.  If the money from the Fifth Ward couldn’t be used then it would be taken out of the Lake Restoration Fund with a payment schedule being drawn up for $10,000 per year. Outgoing Treasurer Jacque Nation said that there wasn’t enough money in the Hotel/Motel tax to pay for it. 

 

 

The motion passed 5-2 with Aldermen Lee Lanzotti, and Jim Olive voting no with Aldermen Shawn Burtle abstaining. Aldermen Ernie Dorchinecz says that there is money coming in.

 

 

Another big discussion was motions for new liquor licenses in town for both Debbie’s Video Gaming Cafe and Annie’s Taylorville. Aldermen Shawn Burtle said, he didn’t have any ill will towards the people trying to run a business, but Taylorville he felt had enough video gaming machines.

 

 

Both motions passed 5-4 with Aldermen Chris Skultetty, Burtle, Kathy Driskell, and Lee Lanzotti voting No. Mayor Bruce Barry was the deciding vote voting yes in the tie. 

 

Mayor Barry thanked those who voted for him in the Mayoral Election, thanking the outgoing Aldermen and promising to continue his work of cleaning up the city.

 

 

The next city council meeting in Taylorville is set for May 3rd. New Aldermen will be sworn in at the May 3rd meeting.

 

To see the full meeting click here

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Two Men In Custody After Shelby County Woman Found Dead

A Shelby County woman is dead and two men are being charged with her death. 72-year-old Sherry Hubbartt was discovered inside her residence in Shelby County, Illinois on Sunday, April 18th. On Monday, the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation issued warrants for the arrest of 25-year-old Clayton L. Anderson of Shelbyville and 19-year-old Thomas M. Miller of Decatur. 

 

Anderson and Miller were taken into custody on Sunday by the Nevada Highway Patrol for various unrelated criminal charges in Nevada.  Miller is in custody at the Clark County Detention Center while Anderson was transported to a Las Vegas, Nevada area hospital.

 

Anderson’s arrest warrant is for the offense of first-degree murder with a victim older than 60 and murder committed while an active order of protection was in effect. He is also being charged with concealment of homicidal death with sentencing enhancement due to age of victim and possession of a stolen vehicle again with sentencing enhancement. He was also wanted on a warrant for previous unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle. 

 

Thomas M. Miller’s arrest warrant is for the offenses of concealment of homicidal death with sentencing enhancement and possession of a stolen vehicle with sentencing enhancements due to the age of the victim.

 

Anderson is being held on a no-bond warrant while Miller is being held on a $500,000 warrant. 

 

The investigation is being conducted by the ISP DCI-Zone 5, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, Decatur Police Department, Shelby County State’s Attorney’s Office, Shelby County Coroner’s Office, Nevada Highway Patrol, and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.

 

The matter is still under investigation by the Shelby County Coroner’s Office, State’s Attorney’s Office and the ISP. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigations at 217-278-5004 or by email at ISP.DCI.Zone05@illinois.gov. 

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April Is Alcohol Awareness Month

April is Alcohol Awareness Month, and while alcohol doesn’t get the focus that a lot of other drugs do, it is still something that can destroy lives and wreak havoc on families. Mindy Melton, development coordinator with Gateway Foundation says that a lot of people don’t realize the danger that alcohol presents.

 

 

Melton sees alcohol use on the increase especially with isolation due to COVID-19.

 

 

If you feel like you have a problem or know someone that does have a problem with alcohol, Melton encourages you to call Gateway who can talk to you and point you in the right direction towards getting help.

 

 

While Gateway does focus heavily on rehab for alcohol, they also focus on other addictions as well.

 

 

There will be an alcoholic awareness stream taking place on Thursday, April 22nd at 3:30 PM. For more information, contact Gateway at www.gatewayfoundation.com. To reach the 24-hour hotline call 877-381-6538.

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Taylorville City Council To Meet Monday Evening

The Taylorville City Council is set to meet on Monday evening, April 19th at 7 PM. After the approval of minutes, the board will resolve a few issues that were table from the last meeting including the Tyler Technologies Software Service Agreement. The board will also look at a Christian County Multi-Jurisdictional All Hazards Mitigation Plan.  

 

Under motions, the board will either table, approve, or deny the following: a special events permit for the PowWow to be held at the Lake Taylorville Marina from June 4-6; a new Cure LampII Launch System, an Intergovernmental Grant Agreement, a Class O Liquor License for Cardinal Restaurant Group which owns Debbies Video Gaming Cafe located at 100 South Main Street; a Class O Liquor License for Annie’s Taylorville located at 117 West Park Street; and a motion to prepare an ordinance to decrease the Liquor License Fees by 50%. 

 

Under Committee Reports, the board will look into purchasing new Playground Equipment and the acceptance of a bid on the 1997 pickup truck from the lake/airport committee. Under Water/Environmental, there is a motion to discuss changing the term reconnection fee to processing fee and some changes to the water collection office city code.

 

Under finance, the board will look at some business development district agreements, and accept the treasurer’s report along with pay bills. The board will also have an update from City Attorney Rocki Romano, and Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry.

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story after the meeting is concluded.

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Illinois Republican Representatives Speak Out On Lack Of Change

Illinois House Republicans voiced their concern over what they see as stalling tactics in the Illinois House of Representatives. Republicans spoke in a press conference on Friday talking about some of those concerns during the Reimagine Illinois sessions, but Representative Mark Batinick says if things don’t change more Illinoisans will leave. 

 

 

Representative Amy Elik says that after a new Speaker of the House has been appointed, nothing has changed from the usual status quo.

 

 

Representative Elik says that 73% of bills approved by the consent calendar were brought forward by Democrats while only 27% were sponsored by Republicans. Out of 697 bills passed out of committee, only 18% were sponsored by Republicans. 

 

Representative David Welter says that despite Democrats talking about ethics reform from the new Speaker of the House Chris Welch, there simply hasn’t been any conversation on it since.

 

 

Representative Welter says that legislators shouldn’t also work as lobbyists or in special interest groups. An outright ban can help to start cleaning the Government.  Representative Welter says this doesn’t have to be a partisan issue.

 

 

To hear the full audio from this press conference, see below. 

 

 

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ISP Looking For Missing Shelby County Woman

The Shelby County Sheriff's Office is looking for a missing woman. 72-year-old Sherry Hubbartt, was reported missing by her family to the Shelby County SHeriff's Office.  Hubbartt was last seen at her residence in Clarksburg, Illinois in rural Shelbyville. 

 

Hubbartt is 5'1" and weighs 180 pounds. She has brown hair and blue eyes.  Ms. Hubbartt has a condition that places her in danger and is without her medication. She was last seen with Clayton Anderson who is a 25 year old white male who is 5'10" and weighs 290 pounds. He has sandy hair and hazel eyes.  The two were in a white 2009 Chevy Impala with Illinois handicapped license plate 250 051. 
 

If anyone has any information regarding this investigation, please contact the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office at (217) 774-3941 or the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) Zone 5 at (217) 867-2211.

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Inmate Who Died In Christian County Jail Identified

A male inmate who died Thursday in Christian County Jail has been identified. Christian County Coroner Amy Calvert Winans has identified the male inmate that died at Taylorville Memorial Hospital ER as 51-year-old Rodney J. Johnson of Springfield. 

 

An autopsy was conducted on Friday in Bloomington and preliminary autopsy results indicate that Mr. Johnson died of medical-related issues and toxicology and additional studies will be available in the upcoming days. There is no foul play suspected in this matter. Illinois State Police Zone 4 is continuing this investigation.

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Christian County Jail Inmate Dies

An inmate at the Christian County Sheriff’s Office Jail has died. On Thursday afternoon at around 4:52 PM, an inmate at the Jail was found unresponsive by a correctional officer, while completing a standard administrative procedure.  Life-saving measures were performed by the Jail nurse along with other correctional officers.  The inmate was transported to the Taylorville Memorial Hospital by ambulance where the inmate was pronounced dead by medical personal at 6 PM. 

 

Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettlekamp contacted the Illinois State Police Zone 4 investigations unit who will be investigating the death.

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Christian County Sheriff's Office Seeking Other Routes Following Safety Tax Not Passing

There was a vote that failed on the most recent ballot for the Safety Tax. This would’ve been a small tax that helped fund improvements to the Christian County Jail. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp was pushing for this to pass and wants to thank those who did vote for it.

 

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp says this is an issue of space. The issues won’t resolve themselves, and there will need to be something done at some point.

 

 

The voting down of the Safety Tax is not the end. Sheriff Kettelkamp and the rest of his team are working on finding other routes to make the upgrades needed.

 

 

The county board and the sheriff’s office work very closely. However, Sheriff Kettelkamp wants it to be known that he was the one pushing the tax on the ballot, not them.

 

 

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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U Of I Extension Promotes Physical Activity During Move More Month

April is Move More Month and the University of Illinois Extension is shedding light on the importance of exercise. Especially with the weather being more cooperative, it’s easier to be more active now. Lisa Peterson shares the recommended amount of physical activity for peak health.

 

 

Getting the heart rate going and being considered moderately active varies from person to person. Since no two people are the same, Peterson suggests something called the talk test to measure if the activity is considered enough.

 

 

Finding motivation to be active might be the hardest part for some people. There are a lot of benefits to it, though, and Peterson says some of them can be seen in the short term.

 

 

The instant effects aren’t the only thing being physically active has to offer. Peterson shares some of the long term health benefits. 

 

 

Peterson appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Lincoln Land Community College Registration Is Open For Summer/Fall 2021

Registration is now open for Lincoln Land Community College and Dee Kruger, Director of Lincoln Land, says that you can register for both summer and fall 2021 classes. While COVID-19 isn’t completely behind us, things are getting back to normal, albeit very slowly.

 

 

As far as this summer, there are four class formats that will be offered: fully face-to-face, fully online, remote, and flex—which is a combination of online and remote. Hybrid classes will also be offered this fall. Hybrid provides mostly online with some face-to-face. 

 

Current students may register for classes via LoggerCentral or by phone. You are encouraged to talk to Kruger before you register though, unless you’ve already done so.

 

 

Students may call the Springfield campus at 786-2292, the Taylorville campus at 786-2754, or the Litchfield campus at 786-3401. In-person services are also available by appointment. You can also visit www.llcc.edu and search for Fall Schedule.

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When Tired Is Too Tired

Tiredness can affect all aspects of your life whether it’s trying to work, spending time with your family, or doing chores around the house. According to the Centers for Disease Control, one in three adults fail to get enough sleep and two out of five Americans report feeling wiped out most of the week. According to the CDC the amount of sleep for adults is seven to nine hours a night.  If you are feeling sluggish and tired and can’t figure out why, there may be something else going on. 

 

Amy Henderson, a Family Practice Physician’s Assistant with OSF Healthcare says that you should understand the situation you’re in, and if there’s something wrong get yourself checked out. 

 

 

Paying a visit to your doctor can make a world of difference as he can schedule an evaluation and order tests to determine what could be the problem. 

 

 

Some of the conditions that can affect tiredness include anemia, vitamin deficiency, sleep apnea, and depression. Anemia is a condition that can happen when you don’t have enough health red blood cells to carry oxygen to your body’s tissues. Vitamin D deficiency may be another reason you feel sluggish.  Low blood levels can cause fatigue. Sleep apnea can make normal sleep impossible, and cause severe daytime drowsiness. Depression can cause decreased energy, changes in sleeping patterns, loss of concentration, and feelings of hopelessness.

 

 

Working with you Doctor can help you determine the best solution for combating your fatigue. Henderson offers some tips on how to help your daily routine.

 

 

For more information, contact your local physician. 

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Kathy Garst Sales Team at Real Estate Group Opens Taylorville Office

 

The Kathy Garst Sales Team at the Real Estate Group in Springfield, have opened a new office on the north side of the Taylorville square, with 2 familiar faces.

 

Jennifer Franklin and Brian Kiel are the 2 team members who now work out of the new location, which was several months in the making.

 

 

 

Kiel says being born and raised in Taylorville and felt the Taylorville office was a natural for the Garst Team.

 

 

 

The new Taylorville office for the Kathy Garst Sales Team at the Real Estate Group, invite the public to an Open House on Thursday, April 29th from 4:30 til 6:30 in the afternoon.  Franklin looks forward to hosting the event.

 

 

 

The Open House also highlights a change in real estate agency for both Franklin and Kiel.

 

 

Franklin and Kiel will have a third person in the Taylorville office starting today.

 

 

The Taylorville office of the Kathy Garst Sales Team will represent real estate buyers and sellers in a 50-mile radius.

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Ducks Unlimited Relies On Volunteers To Save Local Habitats

In 1937, Ducks Unlimited was an organization put together to save the nesting grounds for waterfowl. Jim King Senior Regional Director with Ducks Unlimited got his start with Ducks Unlimited after he was invited to a committee meeting nearly 30 years ago. 

 

 

Ducks Unlimited is a nonprofit organization that does a lot of fundraising and King is very proud of all the volunteers that work hard on the fundraising efforts. it’s something that they are very proud of putting forth 82 cents for every dollar to the conservation mission.

 

 

The work of Ducks Unlimited is amazing with more than 15 million acres across the US protected and restored. 

 

 

Working at the local level volunteers can see the true benefits of working together. 

 

 

For more information visit www.ducks.org/illinois. King appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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FOID Cards Still Hot Button Issue

While there have been a ton of hot button debates that have been keeping legislation busy over the last few years, the FOID card is still something that is talked about quite heavily. State Representative Avery Bourne says that there could be even more pressure coming down based off of current events.

 

 

Representative Bourne says there has to be a better system that can be put into place.

 

 

Bourne says at the end of the day it has to either be fixed or done away with it.

 

 

To stay up on everything going on with State Representative Avery Bourne or to get a hold of her, visit www.repbourne.com.

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Abraham Lincoln Museum Free Admission Monday

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum will be offering free admission on Monday to celebrate sixteen years of America’s 16th President. There will even be a drawing for a golden ticket that will mean one lucky person will win a gift basket filled with Lincoln goodies, from socks to a coffee mug and trivia game.  It has a retail value of $210.

 

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum opened on April 19th, 2005. There have been more than 5 million people to visit the Museum. If you are wanting to go you are still asked to reserve a spot by going online to www.PresidentLincoln.Illinois.gov.  Guests are required to wear face masks, undergo screenings, and maintain social distance.  

 

Free admission is one day only for adults, but the museum is offering free admission for all Illinois students and college students (to the age of 21) through the end of May. The museum has over 12 million items pertaining to all aspects of Illinois history.  For more information find the Museum on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or visit www.PresidentLincoln.Illinois.gov. 

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Local Supply Company Feeds Fast Food Chains In The Midwest

Fast food chains are a frequent stop for a meal close to home or on the road. Most people who stop there don’t think about anything else but what’s on the menu. The reality is those supplies need to come from somewhere. For a good portion of them around the Midwest, that place is McLane Foodservice in Taylorville. Lou Johnson is the General Manager there, and he explains what they do.

 

 

Johnson says McLane Foodservice covers a region of 16 states from the Taylorville location. So, a quick meal one or two states away can still have some home impact for Central Illinois residents.

 

 

Being an entity that supplies for bigger conglomerates didn’t make McLane Foodservice  immune to the economic shakiness caused by the pandemic. They saw a dip in numbers, but lately there has been a huge boom.


 

Because of the recent demand, Johnson says they are hiring. They will have an on site hiring event on Friday to find their next team players.

 

 

Johnson appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Demi's Diner In Nokomis Collapses Causing Road Closure

A partial building collapse has led to a road closure in Nokomis Wednesday morning. At 12:14 AM on Wednesday, the Nokomis Area Fire Protection District, Nokomis Police Department and Nokomis-Will Area Ambulance Service responded to the "Demi's Diner" building with major damage.  The collapse has led to the eastbound lane of Illinois Route 16 to be covered in debris. 

 

According to Nokomis Fire, there were no injuries to the occupants in the apartment above the diner. Demi's Diner has been a Nokomis landmark for several years and will be closed for the forseeable future. The building is an early 1900s masonry type building that has had a kitchen since the 1960s when it was known as the "Candy Kitchen" 

 

The department of transportation has closed Illinois Route 16 from State Street to Cedar Street.  Traffic is being re-routed to Central Street until the building integrity can be tested.

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story as it develops.

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IDOC Resuming Visitations

The Illinois Department of Corrections is resuming in-person visitation at its correctional facilities.  This will allow incarcerated people to once again see their families.  Inmates have gone longer than a year between seeing their loved ones. One of the big reasons for the change has been the number of people that are in custody that have been vaccinated by the Illinois Department of Public Health. IDOC Spokesperson Lindsey Hess says that things have gotten to the point where they can reopen in a safe manner.

 

 

The Taylorville Illinois Department of Correction facility will first start taking visitors on April 19th. Vandalia Correctional Center will start seeing visitors on April 26th. IDOC is using an online system to schedule visits and limit the number of visitors inside at a time. Everyone who enters will be screened, temperatures checked and provided a mask. Plexiglass barriers have been installed on tables, and all tables are spaced for proper social distancing. Hess says going to the IDOC website is the best way to schedule your visits.

 

 

For more information and to visit the IDOC website click here.
 

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Christian County Coal Mining Museum Will Be Opening In New Location

A small gem in Christian County is getting a new home. The Christian County Coal Mine Museum is moving to a permanent location with more space. An anonymous donor allowed them to get a 7,000 square foot building, and Executive Director Chuck Martin is looking forward to what this new location can do for the museum.

 

 

The remodel is moving along, and Martin says there will be a lot of features that celebrate and preserve the history of coal mines in Christian County.

 

 

Not all of the history is pretty. Martin explains there was something called Mine Wars, which they will have plenty of information on as well.

 

 

Mining was a dangerous job and there were disasters that occurred. That topic will be covered. Martin is very excited about a simulated underground coal mine that he is building.

 

 

 

Martin appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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CEFS Helping Those In Need

With the stress on Illinoisans from the COVID-19 pandemic, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBIL) is awarding a CEFS Economic Opportunity Corporation a $20,000 grant as part of the latest round of giving aimed at helping the helpers.  BCBSIL selected 175 organizations across Illinois whose main focus is on care, hunger, shelter, and behavioral health care. Blue Cross and Blue Shield recognize that the need for help is great, and the pandemic affected everyone. 

 

CEFS Economic Opportunity Corporation is a Community Action Agency helping economically and socially disadvantaged persons in the seven rural Illinois counties of Clay, Effingham, Fayette, Shelby, Moultrie, Montgomery, and Christian. The mission is to provide opportunities for people in communities through education and support to achieve and maintain stability. 
 

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Johnson And Johnson Vaccine On Hold

Due to some issues with a rare and severe blood clot, the CDC along with the US Food and Drug Administration is pausing the distribution of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. There have been six reported US cases of a rare and severe type blood clot on individuals that have been receiving the vaccine.

 

Memorial Health System has immediately suspended Johnson and Johnson vaccines. The vaccine clinic scheduled for Friday, April 16th at Taylorville Memorial Hospital has been canceled. IDPH has notified all Illinois COVID-19 providers to stop the use of the J&J vaccine at this time and to continue to distribute the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

 

In Illinois, Moderna and Pfizer make up the majority of vaccines with 483,720 doses for this week with only 5,800 expected to be J&J. If you have received the J&J vaccine, and you develop a severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks of receiving the vaccine, contact your health care provider. 

 

IDPH will continue to monitor the situation and updates will be provided as they become available. 

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Taylorville Kiwanis Hears From Local Connection to International Student Exchange Program at Weekly Meeting

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about a local connection to an International Student Exchange Program, during their weekly meeting Tuesday at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  

 

Kristy Waters of Taylorville, a former exchange student herself, spoke about her family’s involvement with the International Student Exchange Program, a non-profit organization that places 15 to 18-year-olds in some 30 countries across the world.  The organization strives for better understanding among countries and cultures.

 

Waters said although COVID last year reduced the number of students that traveled to foreign countries to stay, the program is rebounding.  

 

Her first experience in the process in 2017 started with a phone call from the area coordinator.

 

 

Herself, her husband and 3 boys have hosted a male student from Germany in the 2017-18 and 2019-20 school years, and are in the process of hosting a female student.

 

The club reminds the public of its April 24th Pancake and Sausage Breakfast at the Taylorville Moose Lodge from 6:30 til eleven in the morning.  Tickets are 7-dollars for adults and 4-dollars for children 12 and under.  Proceeds benefit local Kiwanis projects for children and youth.

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time.  Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.

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Printed Guide From Shelby County Office Of Tourism Is Available

There is always a lot going on in Shelbyville. Freddie Fry, Executive Director of the Shelby County Office of Tourism, has been in the midst of a lot of projects trying to get everything ready to share with the public. Those projects have finished up, and there’s an easy way to figure out everything going on in the area.


 


Everything in the program is locally sourced, even down to the pictures. Fry says they hold contests to get great local pictures to use.


 


Fry explains they’ve started to put it all together in house in order to maintain the most control possible and make sure the correct things are highlighted.


 


Fry appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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Christian County Master Gardeners To Hold Plant Sale In May

There will be a plant sale coming up on May 15th. The Christian County Master Gardeners will be hosting a plant sale in the University of Illinois Extension Office parking lot next month that will feature many different types of plants. Gwen Podeschi and Sharon Hill with the Master Gardeners are very excited, saying they were really waiting for the final details to come to light. And now, they have.

 

 

Plants are not the only thing that will be available. Podeschi and Hill say they are hoping to have the Plant Sale Plus, which would include tools needed for gardening.

 

 

This sale was not able to happen last year. Podeschi and Hill hope that means they have more to offer this year, especially for anyone who might’ve picked up gardening over the pandemic.

 

 

These plants being sold are coming right from the gardens of the Christian County Master Gardeners gardens, so it’s all local. Which Podeschi and Hill say is half the fun.

 

 

Podeschi and Hill appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Republicans Urge Bipartisan Redistricting

Redistricting is something that is heavily talked about and with the census, redistricting will be done soon. State Representative Avery Bourne and other Republicans including US Representative Rodney Davis held a press conference urging Governor JB Pritzker to have a nonpolitical group do the redistricting.


 

Representative Bourne wants an independent group to set the redistricting. State Representative Tim Butler says that this is something the citizens of Illinois want.

 

 

Over 500,000 Illinoisans asked for the question to be put on the ballot, but it never happened. US Representative Rodney Davis says that his district that he’s in was put together to elect a Democrat and Representative Davis had to work hard to overcome it.

 

 

Representative Bourne says that another good example of this is the Village of Stonington which has the line split down the middle.

 

 

To see the full press conference, visit this story at www.taylorvilledailynews.com. 
 

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Taylorville School Board Meets; Recognizes Outgoing Board Members

The Taylorville School Board met on Monday evening to discuss old and new business and to review agendas and more at their monthly meeting at the Taylorville School District High School Cafeteria.  Superintendent Dr. Chris Dougherty says that the board will have a special reorganizational meeting on April 28th.

 

 

During consideration of personnel, Dr. Dougherty announced that Eric Bruder, Principal of Taylorville Elementary would be moving to Taylorville Junior High, and Jessica Miller, principal of Taylorville Junior High would be moving to District Tech Administrator. However, on a motion from the board,  the decision for those two moving would be tabled until the new board is sat in April when a decision could be made then.The motion was not seconded so the motion died. The personnel sheet was approved as presented with the changes in leadership approved. Dr. Dougherty gave a COVID update and says despite some minor setbacks things have gone well. Homecoming will be this Saturday along with the Football game against Charleston.

 

 

The board also discussed the consolidated district plan and went over school improvement plans. The School Board along with Dr. Dougherty recognized the outgoing board and especially Mr. Rick Bryan, Dr. George Freese, and Mr. Stephen Turner.

 

 

Dr. Dougherty also says that she was happy to see so many people running for School Board and discussed the voting as a district rather than the township. 

 

 

The next school board meeting is set for April 28th where the new Board of Education will be sat. 

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State's Attorney Addresses Recent Charges From Fatal Crash

In light of many questions, rumors, and anger over the recent car accident in Taylorville Township on Thursday evening that killed two people and put one 19-year-old in the hospital, Christian County State’s Attorney Mike Havera went on record to explain the charges against Robert M. Hodson, and why the charges were filed the way that they were. Havera says that the aggravated DUI is tougher than what a vehicular homicide or manslaughter would be.

 

 

Havera says they haven’t treated this case any different than any other case.

 

 

Havera also informed Regional Radio News that yes, Hodson has posted his $200,000 bond. He had to pay $20,000 to be released. Havera says it’s everyone’s right to be able to post bond, but there are still conditions applied to it, and the bond was set higher due to the severity of the crime.

 

 

Hodson is facing multiple charges in the accident that occurred late Thursday evening on Illinois Route 48. Hodson is scheduled to appear in court on May 10th.
 

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It's Been A Weird, But Successful Year For The Shelbyville School District

Perhaps the weirdest school year ever will be coming to a close very soon. From uncertainty in sports, to the potential for remote learning, anyone who said they anticipated what was to come is lying. With the end of the year in sight, Superintendent of Shelbyville Schools, Shane Schurict, can only say positive things for what happened in his district this school year.


 


According to Schurict, there were a number of changes and adjustments necessary in order to reach their goals for the school year.


 


Implementing those changes doesn’t come without a few warts. Schurict explains one of those is that the final school day for students will be later than it usually is.


 


School days may have been shorter for students, but teachers had a lot to do. Schurict explains that teachers had to prepare for much more than they probably anticipated.


 


Schurict appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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Taylorville School Board To Meet Tonight

The Taylorville School Board will meet on Monday night at 6 PM for their monthly board meeting to go over agendas, old business, and new business. Under old business, the board will give an update on COVID-19 along with a technology update. The board will also discuss a recommendation to approve HVAC work/performance contracting quotes for Memorial, Taylorville Junior High School, and Taylorville Senior High Schools. 

 

Under new business, the board will discuss a consideration of school improvement plans, while also talk about the consolidated district plan. The board will review the CTI Technology contract and go over summer school credit recovery information. Also under new business, the board will review approval of Go Solutions Renewal Agreement and the custodial supplies for 2021-2022. 

 

The board will recognize retiring board of education members Stephen Turner and Dr. George Freese along with a superintendent report from Dr. Chris Dougherty. The meeting will be held at the High School Cafeteria for Social Distancing.

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Shelbyville Library Happy With Winter Reading Program

The Shelbyville Library is a busy place, the staff makes sure of it by planning many different events. Monica Cameron, Director of the Shelbyville Library, does quite a bit of that planning. She says they recently finished their Winter Reading Program, which was different this year than in past years.


 


There were a number of contributing factors, but Cameron is excited that there were more adults to sign up than children. Overall, she’s elated with how the program went.


 


Getting to teenagers through that program was not an easy task. Cameron explains there is just a lot going on in their life that makes them harder to reach because they simply don’t have the time.
 


With all the changes that’ve happened to families across the nation, getting some time alone, or simply doing something different, was an exciting idea for some of the adults in the Shelbyville community.
 


Cameron appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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People's Bank And Trust Off To Great Start In 2021

People’s Bank and Trust held their annual shareholder's meeting and reviewed performances over what has been a challenging year for the company. President and CEO John Gardner says that overcoming those challenges has made him proud. 

 

 

Despite dealing with COVID, People’s Bank and Trust was able to have quite a few accomplishments and Gardner says that despite restrictions, PB&T helped customers navigate through the pandemic.

 

 

PB&T also recognized and honored the retirement of four long-term officers in Marty Kerns, Judy Prasun, Ken Hart, and David Sprigg, while also recruiting two talented business bankers in Andrew Olson and Lance Vonderheide. 

 

 

Gardner says they hope to continue the path of success in 2021 and that PB&T is off to a great start.

 

 

For more information on People’s Bank and Trust visit www.bankpbt.com/ or call 888-728-1954.
 

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Taylorville Estates Has New Executive Director

There is a new executive director at Taylorville Estates. Janet Dobson has been picked to lead the Assisted Living Home. Dobson who has been in Senior Care for a while now is excited for what the future presents for Taylorville Estates. She says that she really enjoys the business side of senior care. 

 

 

Dobson says she’s excited to be here and finds the families warm and inviting. She’s also proud of what the staff has done in the short time that she’s been there.

 

Toni Clark, Nurse Manager at Taylorville Estates says COVID has been difficult, but they have worked hard to navigate through the thick of it.

 

 

Clark also says that the residents and the resident's families have done a fantastic job of following protocol.  Visitor guidelines are still relatively tight, and Taylorville Estates wants you to set up an appointment before you come and visit, but so far there haven’t been any issues as families are just happy to be able to see their loved ones. Families can also meet outside.

 

Dobson says that she has goals for 2021, but she’s happy with how things are going right now at Taylorville Estates. She does want to enhance some activities that are already going on.

 

 

Dobson also wants to work with the VA to help veterans access their benefits better and work to make sure they are taken care of. 

 

 

For more information on Taylorville Estates call 217-824-2222 or visit www.taylorvilleestates.com. 

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Arrest Made In Deadly Crash In Christian County

The Illinois State Police have released an update on a vehicle crash that happened on Thursday evening that took the lives of two Taylorville individuals. 19-year-old Haley A. Shoot was driving a 2009 Red Ford Focus on Illinois Route 48 near E 1550 North Road when 46-year-old Robert M. Hodson tried to pass a vehicle in his 2018 Silver Jeep Wrangler. He hit Shoot head-on. 

 

Shoot was pronounced dead on the scene along with a male passenger, 20-year-old Zaydin J. Dudra of Taylorville. 19-year-old Jade A. Thomas of Lafeyette, Indiana was also in Shoot’s vehicle and has been transported by ambulance to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries. Hodson was transported to an area hospital with serious, but not life-threatening injuries. 

 

On Friday afternoon around 1 PM, Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation Zone 4 and District 9, arrested Hodson after he was discharged from an area hospital. Hodson was charged with aggravated driving under the influence involving death which is a Class 2 felony. The penalty for this offense carries a term of imprisonment of not less than 6 years, but not more than 28 years as it involved the death of more than one person.

 

Hodson was transported and lodged in the Christian County Jail. Bond was set at $200,000 with 10% to apply. Hodson is expected to make his first appearance on Monday. Hodson was a Capital Police Investigator. Hodson is currently off work, without pay. Secretary of State Jesse White issued a statement saying, "this is a horrific tragedy and I am grieving for the victims and their families. My thoughts and prayers go out to them.”

 

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Two People Dead After Crash In Taylorville Township

The Illinois State Police are investigating a crash that occurred on IL Route 48 near Taylorville in Christian County that has left two people dead and two with very serious injuries. The crash happened on Illinois Route 48 near E 1550 N in Taylorville Township on Thursday night at 11:04 PM. 

 

According to the Illinois State Police, 46-year-old Robert M. Hodson was traveling northbound on IL Route 48 near E 1550 North Road. A vehicle driven by a 19-year-old female from Taylorville was traveling southbound at the same location. Hodson’s vehicle crossed into the left lane to pass another vehicle and hit the 19-year-old’s vehicle head-on. The driver and her rear passenger, an unidentified male were pronounced dead on the scene. Another passenger in the 19-year-old’s vehicle, a female from Lafayette, Indiana was transported by ambulance to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries. 

 

Hodson was transported to an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries. At this time, Hodson has been cited with driving under the influence of alcohol, improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed to avoid a crash, and no valid driver's license/expired. 

 

This accident is still under investigation, and the ISP Traffic Crash Reconstruction Unit is investigating as well. 

 

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Tayloville Native And University Of Illinois Junior Releases Book On Amazon

When students head off to college, they are looking for an avenue to pursue their goals and dreams. Sometimes, those happen sooner than expected. Noah Nelson is a junior at the University of Illinois and he’s already published a book. It’s called Life: A Collection of Short Stories, and it’s available on Amazon. Nelson says he’s been writing for a long time and found a great opportunity to make a dream happen.


 


The writing process is generally full of ideas. Nelson does write ideas down, but he knows the best will stick with him regardless.


 


The author dream has family ties for Nelson, and it’s been something he’s wanted for a long time.
 


For those who share Nelson’s dream of one day becoming an author, he says to not let others dictate your future. You never know when your chance will come.


 


Nelson appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Rodney Davis Talks Infrastructure Bill

Infrastructure is a huge part of politics and for House Representative Rodney Davis, there just isn’t enough of the new 3 trillion dollar bill that will actually go to the infrastructure. Representative Davis says that if our taxes are to go up because of that, then more needs to be done with bipartisanship.

 

 

Representative Davis says that the bill is camouflaging its real purpose and that is hurting people that live in rural areas.

 

 

Representative Davis also believes that the democrats are desperate to try to get everything passed as quickly as possible because of midterms.

 

 

Representative Davis is very concerned that there isn’t a plan moving forward and Democrats haven’t been accountable for previous bills when it comes to COVID relief.

 

 

Representative Rodney Davis appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
 

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PCASA Offers Many Different Avenues For Prevention Education

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and that is a heavy topic. The conversations may be hard, but Deb Bonner, Preventionist and Community Advocate with Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault, knows they have to happen. She says a big part of her job is education to help prevent a horrific event from occurring. 


 


PCASA offers different programs to help with the education aspect, but Bonner says it can’t be just a one time thing.


 


There is research backing up the effectiveness of these programs. Bonner believes that they should be right up there with other programs that get repetition throughout a students schooling life.


 


PCASA offers a podcast on their website for those who want to learn anytime. 


 


Bonner appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Sangamon County Sheriff's Office Vaccinating Inmates

On Wednesday, Sangamon Sheriff Jack Campbell and his Deputies announced that they have begun vaccinating inmates currently housed at the Sangamon County Jail for COVID-19. In an issued press release, Campbell says that they are giving out the Johnson and Johnson vaccine due to it being a one shot dose. Of the 350 inmates in Sangamon County, about half had indicated they would want the vaccine. Sangamon County Sheriff’s have told inmates that this is a purely volunteer vaccination and is not mandatory. 

 

Involved in the process, was two nurses from Sangamon County Public Health, six medics from the Illinois National Guard, and Corrections Staff from the jail.  111 of the 336 inmates signed up for the vaccination and six vaccination stations were set up in the gym. During the vaccination process, 28 inmates changed their mind, 9 inmates who hadn’t signed up, indicated they wanted the vaccination, and 14 employees also received it. In all, 106 vaccinations were given in about 2 hours. 

 

The Sheriff’s Office continues to monitor the inmate population and will coordinate with Public Health to provide more vaccinations in the future for those who want it. 

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COVID Vaccine Available For Everyone 16 And Older Starting Monday

Starting Monday everyone 16 years of age and older will be eligible in the State of Illinois to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Governor JB Pritzker says that he is proud of how far we have come since April of last year, but knows there is still a lot of work ahead.

 

 

Governor Pritzker announced some more mass vaccination sites that will be opening, along with plenty of other options for you to be able to receive the vaccine as the State will start to get its highest shipment of vaccines yet.

 

 

Governor Pritzker stresses that their needs to be patience with this as there will not be enough to vaccinate everyone right away.

 

 

If you want to get the COVID vaccine, there is a hotline you can call to get set up with an appointment by calling 833-621-1284.

 

 

Christian County reported 6 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday for a total of 3,692 and 94 deaths from the virus.

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CEFS Offers Program To Help With Homelessness

Since 1963 CEFS has been helping people on an individual and economic level. From offering transportation and aiding with renting, there is a lot that they can help with. Jodi Rusher, Outreach Coordinator with CEFS in Christian County says they help with rental assistance, but also with those who are homeless.

 

 

Some don’t realize there is homelessness in the Christian County community. Rusher explains rural homelessness looks different than the picture most people have in their heads of city homelessness. 

 

 

CEFS offers a program to help with homelessness called Rapid Rehousing.

 

 

There are a number of things CEFS can help with. Rusher wants people to know they have recently moved locations.

 

 

Rusher appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Nesty's Burger Joint Has Changes To Menu Coming

Restaurants that have been around awhile have not had the easiest time during the pandemic. Nesty’s Burger Joint opened their doors in the midst of it all, back in November. They’ve done well, and owner Nestor Lopez says they are still working.

 

 

There are many unique things about Nesty’s. One of the most obvious ones is the Nesty’s logo branded on the bun, which Lopez considers his signature.

 

 

Lopez is extremely excited to have menu changes coming early next week.

 

 

Nesty’s has worked hard to create an atmosphere that is unique. Between that and the quality of the food, Lopez is very proud of what he’s created.

 

 

Lopez appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Learning Express Staff Standing Up Against Child Abuse With Friday Event

The Regional Office of Education #3 Learning Express Staff will be wearing blue in solidarity on Friday to show their commitment to preventing child abuse. Program Director Paula White says that the Learning Express is a visiting program that helps parents with children under the age of 3 or moms that are pregnant.

 

 

This Friday, April 9th, the staff will be on the courthouse lawn in Christian County in Taylorville to wear blue to show their commitment to preventing child abuse. 

 

 

White says they’re even going to be giving away some stuff to kids at the Courthouse and hold some free giveaways.

 

 

The event will begin around 9 AM and the workers will be there till early afternoon. For more information about Learning Express contact Paula White at 217-532-9605.

 

 

If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected in Illinois call 1-800-25-ABUSE, that’s 1-800-252-2873.

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Christian County YMCA Director Resigning

The Christian County YMCA is saying goodbye to a familiar friend. After 12 years, Chris Weittenhiller, Executive Director has tendered his resignation to the Board of Directors effective April 23rd where he will be taking the reigns as Executive Director of the Illinois Valley YMCA in Peru, Illinois. Weittenhiller says that he is proud of all the accomplishments they have achieved in his time in office.

 

 

COVID-19 presented several challenges, and Weittenhiller says the YMCA did a fantastic job navigating through it.

 

 

Board President Adam Vocks says that there will be an interim director appointed in the next two to three weeks which will allow an opportunity for the YMCA to run smoothly during the search for the next Director. The board expects recruitment to take between 90 to 150 days. As for Weittenhiller, he’s excited for the future.

 

 

An official vacancy announcement for the vacancy will be made available on April 15th. Interested applicants will be encouraged to apply online at www.ccymca.org after the position is officially posted.

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Macon County Executive Director Wolf Passes Away

Macon County Conservation District Executive Director Richie Wolf, passed away on Thursday April 1st. Wolf joined the Conservation District in 2013 as Nature Center Manager for Rock Springs Nature Center. In October of 2019, Wolf became the Executive Director of Macon County Conservation District. 

 

Some of Wolf’s accomplishments include countless educational programs and field trips, storytelling and a highly knowledgeable naturalist. He expanded the Earth Adventures summer camp to an all-day, full-week day camp allowing children to spend more time outside. Wolf also introduced the Rock Springs Summer Concert Series, and spearheaded renovations inside the Rock Springs Nature Center. 

 

President of the Board of Trustrees Karen Schneller says that Wolf’s legacy will be the work he did with people to connect them to conservation and ecology. Paul Marien, has been appointed to serve as Interim Director. Marien was previously the Executive Director before Wolf.

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Central Illinois Receives Funding For Infrastructure

The Illinois Department of Transportation announced on Monday that $7 million in local infrastructure funding will be distributed locally as part of the Rebuild Illinois program. State Senator Doris Turner announced on Wednesday morning that Montgomery and Macoupin Counties will receive a portion of those funds. Turner recognized that truck drivers have much to consider and creating a designated truck route in these communities would help manage traffic and provide safer driving experiences for everyone.

 

The grant was made possible through the IDOT Truck Access Route Program which allows counties municipalities and townships to receive assistance for upgrading roads to accommodate trucks. Both Litchfield and Carlinville will receive funding with Old Route 66 located at Illinois 16 County Road 170 E receiving $76,500 and Shipman Road located at Illinois 108 Loveless Parkway receiving $94,000. 

 

Senator Turner also praised the funding as boosting jobs and providing resources to local communities to continue to grow and keep the roads safe for everyone.

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Christian County Farm Bureau To Host Vaccination Clinic

With more vaccine shots available, there are more ways to get the vaccine. On April 15th, the Christian County Farm Bureau will become another avenue for that. Manager of the Christian County Farm Bureau, Mellisa McMillan, says they will be hosting a vaccination clinic in their parking lot.

 

 

McMillan says the clinic will be in their west parking lot.

 

 

The Christian County Health Department will set up the second shot clinic, which will also be at the farm bureau. More information can be found on the Christian County Farm Bureau Facebook page. McMillan appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Central Illinois Food Bank Bringing Nutritional Options To Partners

It’s no secret that the pandemic has taken a toll on many families, thus increasing the need among families. One of the needs that emerged was an increased need for food. Adam Handy, Partner Resource Coordinator with the Central Illinois Foodbank, says that getting nutritious food to people in need has been a focus.

 

 

Having options of food adds another good dimension to this process. According to Handy, it also allows the food bank to tailor what they send to each specific community.

 

 

Specifying foods to the need of the community is happening at the Taylorville Food Pantry, too. Amy Hagen, Coordinator for the Taylorville Food Pantry says it starts with their volunteers forming relationships.


 

Hagen continues, specifying what that process has looked like for them. That’s led to an influx of lettuce. 

 

 

Both Handy and Hagen appeared as a guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Congressman Rodney Davis Believes MLB Has Moved Its All-Star Game Under False Pretenses

Major League Baseball has moved their All-Star Game from Atlanta to Colorado. This move is in response to a bill passed in the state of Georgia. Congressman Rodney Davis explains that the perception of the bill is vastly different from what it actually says.

 

 

According to Congressman Davis, it’s been labeled as a voting rights bill, which is not the first time something like this has happened.

 

 

The perception is that this bill will shrink the voter opportunity, however, Congressman Davis says reading the bill is important because that is not true.

 

 

Congressman Davis appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Taylorville Sees Changes In Government And School Board

Taylorville Government and Taylorville School Board saw a lot of change from Tuesday’s election. For Taylorville Government, Julie Lilly ran unopposed, but there will be a new City Treasurer, as Scott Alberssen defeated Jacque Nation 1196-1047. Nation made headlines earlier in the year accusing Mayor Bruce Barry of inappropriate comments. Incumbent Larry Budd defeated James McCoy 306-207 for Ward 1. In Ward 2, Jeremy Wilson defeated Incumbent Lee Lanzotti and Jeffrey Stoner with 236 votes. Lanzotti finished with 215. Doug Brown ran unopposed in election for Ward 3, and Steve Dorchinecz ran unopposed in Ward 4. 

 

For the Taylorville School Board, For the 2 year term, Carla Mickey defeated Jim Andruch 1,952-1286.  For the 4 year term, Jennifer Norris, Brenda Patrick, and Tricia Marburger defeated Rick Bryan. Norris had the most votes with 2,670. Patrick had 2,558 and Marburger had 1,861. 

 

Turnout for Christian County for the elections sat at 30.4% with 6,682 ballots cast throughout the county. 

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Safety Tax, School Board At Large Elections Fail

The Christian County Public Safety Tax which was going to go towards getting a new jail facility in Christian County and new offices for the Christian County Emergency Management Agency, 9-1-1 and Sheriff failed 4,842-1,327 Tuesday. The public safety tax, which would tax $1 for every $100 spent was a hot topic issue discussed quite frequently as voters seemed wary of voting for more taxes. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp had spoken to Regional Radio News previously about how important this was for the county as it needs a new jail desperately. 

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp and the Christian County Board will have to go back to the drawing board on this issue though and look for another way to pay for the new facilities. Sheriff Kettelkamp has pushed for new facilities due to overcrowding, maintenance not being kept up, and damage to the building.

 

The Taylorville School District proposition which would change votes for school board members to the most popular members as opposed to members from each region failed as well. The final vote was 2,172-1,125. Taylorville School District Superintendent Dr. Chris Dougherty had supported this move but many people including the Christian County Farm Bureau were against it fearing that it would limit rural representation on the Board.

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on Election Day coverage and to www.taylorvilledailynews.com. 

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Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry Wins Reelection, Other Mayors, Village Presidents Named Also

Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry has defeated challenger Bill Newberry unofficially, 1,317-766. The Taylorville Mayor who first was named Mayor in 2017, has handled quite a bit since his time in office including a tornado and COVID-19.

 

Barry has been excited for the new website “Small Town Taylorville” and has goals for increasing business in downtown Taylorville. He is also proud of the Business Development District that has done a good job of bringing business to the city. 

With Pana Mayor Don Kroski not seeking reelection, the field was open for a new candidate. Nathan Pastor defeated Steve Scott and Rod Helm with 547 votes. New Pana Mayor Nathan Pastor has a vision to “Revitalize, Restore, and Regrow the City of Roses.” 

 

Roger D. Cox won the election for Mayor of Assumption, defeating Ricky Bradshaw Jr. and Cole Johnson. Cox won with 138 votes. Josephine Rodden won the election for Mayor of Bulpitt and Bob Morris won the election for Village President of Kincaid defeating Deborah Freeston. Larry Tolliver defeated Patrick Kane for election in Morrisonville as the Mayor. Tolliver had 161 votes. Boomer Neece won President of Moweaqua with 1 vote. Michel White won the election for Mayor in Mt. Auburn defeating Incumbent Amber Dooley 66-59. 

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Complete Election Results For The Region

In order to find the results for your township/County, Regional Radio News has compiled them all into one place.


For Montgomery County Results, Click HERE.

 

For Shelby County Results, Click HERE.

 

For Moultrie County Results, Click HERE.

 

For Fayette County Results, Click HERE.

 

For Christian County Results, Click HERE.

 

For Macoupin County Results, Click HERE.

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for complete coverage on the 2021 Election.

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Christian County Election Results

These are the current unofficial results of the following contested races in Christian County.  For complete election results please visit, https://il-christian.pollresults.net/ or click here.

 

Assumption City Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

ROGER D COX 138
COLE JOHNSON 56
RICKY A BRADSHAW, JR 105

 

Assumption City Ward 2 Alderman

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

KANDICE E SMITH 54
JOE COCHRAN 65

 

Assumption City Ward 3 Alderman

Total Precincts Reporting 100%
SELENA REED 55
FELICIA KING 33

 

Pana City Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

NATHAN PASTOR 547
STEVE SCOTT 172
ROD HELM 55

 

Pana City Ward 4 Alderman

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

ROY G. WELBURN 20
KENT SIMS 134

 

Taylorville City Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

BILL NEWBERRY 766
BRUCE J. BARRY 1317

 

Taylorville City Treasurer

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

SCOTT ALBERSSEN 1102
JACQUE NATION 925

 

Taylorville City Ward 1 Alderman

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

JAMES M. McCOY 152
LARRY W. BUDD 211

 

Taylorville City Ward 2 Alderman

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

JEFFREY T. STONER 124
WILLARD LEE LANZOTTI 191
JEREMY WILSON 216

 

Bulpitt Village Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

JOSEPHINE RODDEN 20
KRIS WARREN 32

 

Bulpitt Village Trustee (Vote for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

DONALD DENNING 28
AUSTIN MOORE 31

 

Harvel Village Trustee (Vote for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

DAVID L. YARD 8
RONALD R. BERGSCHNEIDER 8

 

Kincaid Village President

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

DEBORAH I. FREESTON 117
ROBERT (BOB) MORRIS 230

 

Kincaid Village Trustee (VOTE for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

JASON DEES 111
GARY L. WARREN 124
ANDREW E. MAHAN 79
MICHAEL E. LAWRENCE 181
SUE ANN PASO 119
BARBARA I. GARNER 60
DANNIE W. GIBSON 165
ANGELA WANGER 138

 

Morrisonville Village Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

LARRY E. TOLLIVER 161
PATRICK R. KANE 114

 

Morrisonville Village Trustee (Vote for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

DIANE L. DAVIS 149
DIANE M. RUSH 161
KENNETH R. BADMAN JR. 176
MARCIA A. ROSENTHAL 173

 

Moweaqua Village President

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

D. "BOOMER" NEECE 1
BRAD METZGER 0

 

Moweaqua Village Trustee

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

MARK E. TRAUGHBER 0
SHAWN I. CONLIN 1
MIKE SNYDER 0

 

Mt Auburn Village Mayor

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

AMBER DOOLEY 59
MICHEL WHITEHEAD 66

 

Mt Auburn Village Trustee

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

DENISE CAREY 85
SANDRA GOODER 65

 

Owaneco Village Trustee (Vote for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

PAUL MAXWELL 20
RONALD MOOMEY 27
JOHN WILHOUR 27

 

Palmer VIllage Trustee

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

STEPHEN W. JOSTES 31
LUANNE STONE 25

 

Stonington Village Trustee

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

ANDREW CALLAN 112
TAMMY WILSON 117
KOREY BAILEY 99

 

TAYLORVILLE CUSD NO. 3 BOARD OF EDUCATION UNEXPIRED 2 YEAR TERM
Total Precincts Reporting 100%
CARLA MICKEY 1952
JIM ANDRUCH 1286

 

TAYLORVILLE CUSD NO. 3 BOARD MEMBER 4-YEAR TERM (VOTE FOR 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

RICK BRYAN  1544

BRENDA PATRICK 2332

JENNIFER NORRIS 2436

TRICIA MARBURGER 1685

 

Taylorville Township Supervisor 

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

BILLIE HEBERLING 1177

DEBORAH C. MCCOY 966

 

Taylorville Township Clerk

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

JACQUE WILLISON 856
KATHY GRONEWALD 1264

 

Taylorville Township Trustee (Vote for 4)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

PATRICK KRETZER 1049
WESLEY WILSON 864
TERRY L. ALLEN 854
BEVERLY GRAHAM 889
TANYA RENO 884
KAY FREVERT 1346
GLEN BERRY 907
VINCENT O. HARRIS II 839

 

Tovey Village Trustee (Vote for 3)

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

MARGARET PUCCETTI 80
MICHAEL ZANOTTI 82
JODY CARRIKER 55

 

Christian County Public Safety Tax

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

Yes 1327

No 4842

 

Taylorville School District Proposition To Elect At Large

Total Precincts Reporting 100%

Yes 1125

No 2172

 

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Taylorville Kiwanis Meet, Discuss Fund Raising and Projects for Children and Youth

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about upcomiong fund-raising efforts, and plans for further work at Kiwanis Park on Lake Taylorville, during their weekly meeting Tuesday at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  

 

The club is busy working towards its April 24th Pancake and Sausage Breakfast at the Taylorville Moose Lodge from 6:30 til eleven in the morning.  Tickets are 7-dollars for adults and 4-dollars for children 12 and under.  Proceeds benefit local Kiwanis projects for children and youth.

 

One of those ongoing projects discussed during their Tuesday meeting, was further work on the main pavilion at Kiwanis Park, as well as building a second smaller pavilion.  Kiwanis members are working on funding sources to replace the 25-year-old concrete in the main pavilion, as well as a timetable for building the second smaller pavilion.  

 

Kiwanis Spiritual Values chair Dick Wamsley announced the club's annual Prayer Luncheon has been set for May 25th.

 

And, the club announced it will again hold drive-thru donation days to benefit the Taylorville Food Pantry, on Saturdays in May, July, September, and November, at the Miller Media Group parking lot.  More details will be forthcoming.  The Kiwanis Club's efforts in collecting food and monetary donations, were the largest donations the Food Pantry received last year, thanks to the generosity of the Taylorville community.

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time.  Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.

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Fire In Pawnee At Restaurant

Regional Radio News has learned of a fire that broke out at a restaurant in Pawnee on Tuesday. Multiple fire crews were headed out to Copperheads, which is located at 622 North Pawnee Street, in Pawnee. The firefighters are working hard to save some of the surrounding buildings and wind has been a factor. Firefighters have been battling the blaze now since around 12:30 PM. 

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The Scovill Zoo Is Open Again

The Scovill Zoo in Decatur is open again. They just held their opening weekend this past weekend. Director of the zoo Ken Frye, along with two baby Nigerian Dwarf goats, shared that they made the event Easter themed. 

 

 

The Scovill Zoo does have to adhere to COVID guidelines, but Frye explains there’s more available now than a year ago.

 

 

Tickets can be purchased on the zoo’s website. Frye says there are also free admission days to look out for.

 

 

There are a lot of different animals to see at the Scovill Zoo.

 

 

Frye appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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PCASA Holding Virtual Walk A Mile In Her Shoes Event

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and there are some events going on to raise money towards helping a topic that is hard to talk about. Walk A Mile In Her Shoes is one of those events. Deb Bonner, Preventionist and Community Advocate with Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault, explains it will be virtual this year.

 

 

Bonner says the participants have more control over what they do this year. PCASA has set a goal of raising $10,000.

 

 

PCASA has other events through the month as well. Bonner shares that some of these are ongoing events.

 

 

There are a lot of services that PCASA provides, which includes a 24 hour hotline that is completely confidential.

 

 

Bonner appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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New Music Lesson Shop Opening In Taylorville

A new music lesson store will be opening in Taylorville this summer. Taylorville Music Lessons will be opening up at 311 South Main Street in Taylorville near the Post Office and offering all kinds of music lessons. Everything from trumpet lessons, guitar lessons, piano lessons, singing lessons, and much more. Owner Mike Semerau has played drums since he was little and has been playing and will be teaching drum lessons.

 

 

Semerau says that you won’t have to drive to Springfield or Decatur anymore for lessons.

 

 

Semerau is hoping for an opening in June with plenty of activities coming this summer and fall.

 

 

Semerau says that he has plenty of family in Taylorville and has asked around the community. He believes that this will benefit the community greatly.

 

 

Taylorville Music Lessons does not have a Facebook page yet, but you can call Mike at 630-379-9505. Semerau has been teaching for over 26 years.

 

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Governor Talks American Rescue Plan

Governor JB Pritzker wants to see all kids back in school, but he says that there is a process that needs to happen before that can happen again for everyone. With federal funding, the Governor is looking at advances for education, to get students back on top. 

 

 

Governor Pritzker says that the last year has taught us how to be stronger and how to reach our children through even more ways.

 

 

The American Rescue Plan, which is a Federally Funded Grant program for schools, has been a huge asset according to the Governor.

 

 

No matter what the School has faced, the American Rescue Plan helps with all projects that schools want to do. 

 

 

The Governor was on hand Monday in Champaign to talk about the American Rescue Plan.

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Taylorville City Council Meets For First April Meeting

The Taylorville City Council met on Monday evening. The board praised and recognized Ted Chapman, Taylorville Volunteer Firefighter with a framed Axe. Chapman is retiring. The meeting itself was fairly straightforward with the Red Bland Little League Parade approved for April 24th at 10 AM, ordinances concerning the business development district-approved, and budgets being set for 2021-2022. Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry gave his comments and urged everyone to vote on Tuesday.

 

 

One of the major motions that was set to be discussed and talked about was a motion to recommend the City Council decrease Liquor License Fees by 50% at pour establishments only, which would be determined by the Liquor Commissioner. Larry Budd brought the motion to the floor but said he was opposed to it. Aldermen Lee Lanzotti requested to table it, since Alderman Kathy Driskell was not present.

 

 

The motion was tabled by a final vote of 4-2 with Aldermen Jim Olive and Meg Bryant voting no and Alderman Shawn Burtle abstaining. A motion approving Tyler Technologies Software as a Service Agreement was also tabled.

 

The board also approved signs and ordinance for signs to be posted along the South Side of Gandy Street for “Cemetery Visitor Parking only” at the Cemetery. The City Council also approved the request of Oak Hill Cemetery to close Cherokee Street for Memorial Day Services on May 27th from 6:30 AM until 11 AM. 

 

The board also tabled a motion to recommend approval for purchase of a new Cure Lamp II Launch System until all members of the board were present. The next City Council meeting for Taylorville is set for April 19th.

 

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Shelbyville Resident From California Is Enamored With The Town

Shelbyville has a lot to offer in many different aspects of life. No one may understand that more than Shelbyville resident Joe Thompson, who spent 71 years living in California before finding his way back to Central Illinois.

 

 

Originally born in Pana, Thompson moved to California when he was 11 years old. When he decided to leave, he just went East without knowing where he was going. He feels fortunate to have found Shelbyville because it fits him.

 

 

Thompson is a regular at the Shelbyville Library, and it’s just another example of what he enjoys about the town.


 

The people of Shelbyville really stick out to Thompson, and that happened even before he had a house. 

 

 

Thompson appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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Sangamon County Sheriff's Office Arrest Stabbing Suspect In Rochester

The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office has arrested someone in connection to a stabbing that occurred on April 1st. 46-year-old Keely A. Williams of Rochester was arrested after following up on numerous leads, and conducting interviews with multiple people with knowledge of the situation and the victim. At 4:17 AM on April 1st, a 9-1-1 call came in concerning a stabbed victim. The victim was 38-year-old Joshua R. Pfeiler who eventually succumbed to his injuries.

 

The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office along with the Sangamon County State’s Attorney’s Office obtained an arrest warrant charging Williams with 3 counts of First Degree Murder and 1 count of aggravated domestic battery. Williams was arrested after she turned herself in without incident on April 2nd at 5 PM. She was accompanied by her attorney, Scott Hanken. Authorities learned that Williams and Pfeiler had lived together and were involved in a romantic relationship together.  

 

Williams is currently incarcerated at the Sangamon County Jail on a $2,000,000 bond. She made her first appearance in Sangamon County Court on Friday.

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Second Street Power Offers A Variety Of Mowing Items And Service

Second Street Power is the zero turn headquarters which means they have a lot to offer in terms of lawn mowers. Liz Depew is a Sales Executive with the business, and shares all that someone can find when the go to the store.

 

 

They are able to help with a lot of different issues at Second Street Power. Depew explains that it helps to know the serial number of what you’re looking for.

 

 

Second Street Power is full service. Depew says they’ll work on almost anything that gets brought in, even it it wasn’t purchased there.

 

 

Since they are full service Depew says there are plenty of warranties available. 

 

 

Depew appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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Illinois State Police Investigating Officer Involved Shooting

The Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation is helping investigate a fatal officer-involved shooting that occurred on April 1st in Macoupin County. On April 1st at 7:04 PM, the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office responded to a well-being check at a residence in Brighton along with the Brighton Police. The Police responded to the 100 block of North Street in Brighton. The caller was identified as 47-year-old James A. Iler. 

 

According to deputies, Iler made alarming statements on the call that warranted a response to check on his well-being. Three Macoupin County Sheriff’s Officers along with one Brighton Police Officer responded to the scene and spent more than 50 minutes talking to Iler. During the incident, Iler allegedly charged at one of the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Officers while armed with a knife and the Deputy fired two shots at Iler. Iler fell to the ground and was given CPR. Iler would succumb to his injuries on the scene. No officers were injured.

 

The incident is still under investigation, and anyone with any additional information is encouraged to contact ISP Zone 6 investigations at 618-571-4124 or contact Crime Stoppers at 866-371-8477.

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Campgrounds And Fishing Opening At Lake Shelbyville

It’s warming up outside, which means lake season is right around the corner. Brock Key with the US Army Corps of Engineers says the levels of Lake Shelbyville look good and things will be opening up soon.

 

 

As things start to open up, registration is needed for the various locations. Key explains this year, that registration will look a little different.

 

 

Fishing is underway, and according to Key some of the fishing stations opened on Friday. However, not all of them will be opening this year.

 

 

Key says they have plenty of different kinds of fish in Lake Shelbyville, but since there are limits with some of them it’s important to know what you’re catching.

 

 

Key appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show live from our studios in Downtown Shelbyville.

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Taylorville Police To Host Event

The Taylorville Police Department will host an event called Cops, Coffee, & Cold Scoops at the LP Coffee & Creamery at 715 West Springfield Road on Friday, April 9th from 5:30 until 8 PM. Taylorville Police Officer Kirsten Bolinger says the Police are holding this event to meet and greet citizens but to also help with donations to benefit the Law Enforcement Torch Run for the Special Olympics.

 

 

Bolinger says that this is a great event that goes a long way towards helping a good cause.

 

 

You can find more information on the event, and any other events that the Taylorville Police Department are hosting by visiting their Facebook page.

 

 

To find more on the Special Olympics in Illinois visit  https://www.soill.org/. And click on “Get Involved.”

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Taylorville City Council To Meet Monday Evening

The Taylorville City Council is set to meet on Monday evening, April 5th, at 7 PM at the Municipal Building. There will be recognition of Volunteer Firefighter Ted Chapman along with a Smalltown Taylorville update. Under ordinances, there will be some ordinances concerning the business development district, along with some technology agreements and approving a couple special event permits. 

 

Under committee reports, the board will discuss reducing the Liquor License Fees by 50%. There will be a motion to pay businesses that apply and qualify for the BDD Lease Payment Grant Program to assist with rent or lease payments, the board will also discuss approval of allocating funds from the Business Development District to projects that need to be completed and to approve budgets. The board will also recommend the purchase of a diesel lawn tractor, approve special event permits, for the homecoming parade and graduation parade, and Memorial Services. 

 

There will also be City Attorney and Mayoral updates. To see the full board agenda, click here

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Missions For Taylorville Aims To Help The Community

Since 2010, Missions For Taylorville has been working on home improvement projects around the community. Bill Kerns, coordinator for the program, explains more about what they do.

 

 

The need for this kind of work can out pace the contractors available to do it. That’s where Missions For Taylorville comes in.

 

 

Missions For Taylorville really rose to prominence following the December 1st tornado that came through Taylorville. Kerns says they are down to just a few projects left, but the pandemic got in the way.

 

 

Kerns appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Anaerobic Digestion Technology Can Create Renewable Energy

Anaerobic digestion technology is a tool that can be used to produce biogas, which can be used as a renewable form of energy. Environmental and Energy Stewardship Educator with the University of Illinois Extension Office, Ashley Belle, explains more about anaerobic digestion.

 

 

According to Belle, what biogas is made up of is dependent on what the materials are being decomposed.

 

 

Belle says there are many different uses for biogas.

 

 

Once again, this biogas is produced via anaerobic digestion, which Belle shares has many applications.

 

 

Belle appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Spurling Title To Sell Business In Taylorville

A staple on the Taylorville square will be sold today. Spurling Title on the South Side of the Taylorville Square have been run by Gary and Brenda Spurling since 1996 and they announced that they will be selling the business and retiring. Gary Spurling says that they have sold it to a company in Champaign called Allied Capital Title, but everything is expected to stay the same.

 

 

Brenda Spurling says technology in the title industry has changed dramatically in the last 30 years which is part of the reason why the Spurling’s sold Spurling Title. 

 

 

As far as the future, Brenda Spurling says they are still undecided.

 

 

Brenda and Gary Spurling thanked Taylorville and Christian County for their support over the last 2 decades.

 

 

For more information on Allied Capital Title, visit their website at https://actil.net/.

 

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Schools Receive Additional Funding To Combat COVID

State Senator Doris Turner announced that school districts in Central Illinois received nearly $125 million in additional funding to help address challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. Senator Turner is hoping that students and teachers now see the end in sight on the pandemic and that the schools use this money to produce “higher test scores, and increased graduation rates.”

 

The funding was received as part of federal COVID-19 relief packages. Some local schools included is Morrisonville which received $438,516, Taylorville which received $6,435,198, Edinburg which received $673,771, Pana which received $4,976,666, South Fork which received $995,486, Nokomis which received $3,533,859, and Central A & M which received $1,769,680. 

 

Funding came from the American Rescue Plan which allows flexibility in how they can use the money over the next 3 ½ years. 20% of the funding must be used to address learning loss, but schools have quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to where they spend the money on. The State Board of Education produced a guide for local school districts to help guide them on how to spend the money. In total, Illinois has received over $7 billion to support local school districts.

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Death Investigation Complete From Vehicle Crash In February

A death investigation conducted by Christian County Coroner Amy Calvert Winans has been completed. 38-year-old Zachary G. Holloway of Edinburg was pronounced dead on the scene at a crash located on 2100 North Road in Buckhart Township on February 22nd, 2021. Autopsy results show that Mr. Holloway died of multiple blunt injuries due to a sport utility vehicle crash. The cause of death was determined to be accidental. The investigation was handled by the Christian County Sheriff’s Office. 

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Sangamon County Sheriff's Office Responds To Stabbing In Rochester

The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office has responded to a stabbing in Rochester. On Thursday, April 1st at 4:17 AM, Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office responded to the 6800 block of White Deer Trail in Rochester for a reported victim of a stabbing. Once on the scene, deputies discovered a 37-year-old white male victim down in the driveway of the residence. Deputies rendered aid to the victim until emergency medical services responded. The victim was transported by EMS to Saint John’s Hospital where the victim was pronounced dead. Sangamon County Detectives are conducting the investigation. 

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U Of I Extension To Hold Flower Arranging Class

The events continue for the University of Illinois Extension as they aim to continue education, even if it can’t be in person. Their events cover a wide variety of topics. 4H Youth Development Educator Sara Marten shares about the Main Street Florist Flower Arranging event they have coming up later in April.

 

 

Because there will be supplies provided to bring to the Zoom call, Marten says they are asking for registration by April 15th.

 

 

There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to putting together a flower arrangement, and this class is a good way for students to acquire a new skill.

 

 

Registration can be done through the U of I Extension website. Marten explains there is a $10 cost to this class.

 

 

Marten appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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TMH Foundation Announces Donations

Two local donors have supplied the Taylorville Memorial Hospital Foundation with disinfection systems. These systems will be used at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital Environmental Services Department. 

 

Jim and Deb Stoddard have supported the TMH Foundation with donations. These donations have supported the purchase of two Clorox 360 Electrostatic Sprayers and a handheld unit to enhance cleaning and sanitizing efforts at the hospital. This gift also provided equipment dedicated to the Acute Care department and the Operating Room. These cleaning and sanitizing machines help reduce pathogens and ensures disinfection in hard-to-reach places like sides, undersides, and backsides of certain surfaces that can’t be reached otherwise.

 

Jim Stoddard operated Stoddard Foods in Assumption, while Deb Stoddard served as surgery manager at TMH for many years until she retired. She is a longtime member of the TMH Auxiliary.

 

Information about becoming a donor can be found by contacting the TMH Foundation at 707-5271 or by email at tmhfoundation@mhsil.com.

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Incumbent Treasurer Candidate Brings Experience To The Ballot

Jacque Nation is the Treasurer for the city of Taylorville, and she is running for re-election on April 6th. Having been in the position, she knows there are a lot of responsibilities that come with it.

 

 

Nation says she brings a wealth of experience to the role based on all the tasks that come with it.

 

 

Because there is so much on the Treasurer's plate, Nation feels it’s important to have continuity in the office. Which is why she decided to go for re-election. 

 

 

There are a lot of important items that are coming up for the city revolving around budgets. Since Nation has been a part of Taylorville’s city government for so long, she feels she’s very well suited to handle it.

 

 

Nation appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Lanzotti Looking Toward Future

Running for reelection in Ward II in Taylorville, Lee Lanzotti spoke with Regional Radio News about some of the things that he hopes to accomplish if re-elected. One of the main priorities that Lanzotti has is getting the sewers fixed.

 

 

Lanzotti credits his time working with the Department of Transportation as having an impact on his time as Alderman.

 

 

Lanzotti also says that he has a focus on issues in his ward, but other wards as well. 

 

 

Lanzotti has big plans if he gets reelected including focusing on the Business Development District funds and a focus on the new Veterans Memorial.

 

 

Lanzotti appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Taylorville Memorial Hospital Offering Mental Health Course

Now more than ever there is a light being shed on the importance of mental health. Taylorville Memorial Hospital is offering free training to help further education and skills to help with those who might be going through a mental health crisis. President and CEO or Taylorville Memorial Hospital, Kim Bourne, explains this course comes with a certification.

 

 

Generally this course would be in person, but Bourne says that due to COVID it will be offered online.

 

 

Bourne says the course is focused on youth and teens, helping to identify when they may be in crisis.

 

 

It’s been a tough year all around. Bourne believes that makes this course even more vital now.

 

 

Bourne appeared as a guest on the NewsTalk WTIM Morning Show.

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IDNR Introduces New Website

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources announced the launch of a new website called CICADA (The Conservation Inclusive Construction and Development Archive). This website is an online resource which aims to engage the public and private sectors in habitat protection, restoration, and biodiversity conservation through voluntary actions. 

The site serves as a one-stop shop for residential and private landowners to find guidance and ideas to make their property more wildlife friendly. IDNR Spokesperson Rachel Torbert says that this is a great way to find information to work around different wildlife species.

 

 

The website features projects small and large as far as what you can accomplish to help wildlife.

 

 

CICADA users also will be linked to assistance programs for landowners and those who want to make tax-deductible donations towards the Illinois Conservation Foundation. The website also provides tips on how to certify habitat projects with various organizations. There is also a helpful link to other businesses and other wildlife websites. To view the website visit https://cicada-idnr.org. 

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Social Security And Small Businesses

With COVID still a hot button topic, many Federal buildings are still closed or have limited in person help. Jack Myers, Public Affairs Specialist with the Social Security Administration says that there are multiple numbers you can call to reach that will help you get in contact with someone who can answer your questions.

 

 

While small businesses have been hurt by COVID, Myers says that he does have some tips for helping small businesses navigate through this pandemic.

 

 

You can also create and submit W2’s electronically without having any hassle. It does take a while to register though so now is the time to do it to get ready for next year.

 

 

Myers also says that if you need help managing your Social Security money there are programs that can help such as the Payee program.

 

 

Myers appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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